As Jesus and his disciples entered a Samaritan village on their way to Jerusalem, they were not welcomed. James and John were immediately on the defense and wanted to retaliate!
“Lord, do you want us to call down fire from heaven to consume them?”
We are all so very human and like James and John, we want to even the score when we feel we have been wronged or some injustice has been wrought upon those we love. We have become a people quick to anger and slow to forgive! Our world is filled with violence and unrest! It has become the norm to pick up a gun or throw the first punch which ultimately ends in tragedy. When did we become a people who favor revenge over reconciliation?!
The first step to peace and reconciliation is to remember that God is with us! God is love! God sees all people and creation with the eyes of love and as the love children we are, we are called to see the love of God in others, especially those we don’t even like! Hard stuff!!!!
“Let us go with you, for we have heard that God is with you.” This statement of faith closes out our first reading today. God is with us, no matter our nationality, creed or color, whether vaccinated or unvaccinated, young or old. If we truly believe this, then what is stopping us from taking back our neighborhoods, churches, schools, families, cities, towns and country. It’s way past time to promote reconciliation rather than revenge, to live in love rather than anger.
It is time to recognize and appreciate the goodness of God found in the beauty of family, faith communities, friends, nature, moral and just leaders. Jesus rebuked his disciples and journeyed on to another village. It is time for us to do the same. Let us begin in small ways, maybe making that phone call to someone we haven’t spoken to in a long time, get reconnected, be willing to say I’m sorry, let’s begin again! Let us be willing to sit at the same table with those we totally disagree with the goal of working together to find a common ground.
Jesus is calling us to move on. Jerusalem is waiting to welcome us. The kingdom is open to all God’s children! Our hope rests in walking with Jesus! Let’s get moving Church!!!!!!
Theresa Secord is a retired Pastoral Associate from St. Agnes Parish, Louisville, Kentucky.