Another way . . .

I love the way Jesus deals with the religious leaders who are trying to trip him up.  Each time they come to him with a question or a test or a trick, Jesus answers, but seldom does he answer the exact question they raise.  He really doesn’t tell them their answer is wrong. Over and over, Jesus shows the people who oppose him (as well as the people who are trying to follow him) that their questions are missing the mark.  God’s way of looking at the world is so different than ours.  

In the Gospel reading for this coming Sunday, a group of religious leaders (who don’t actually believe in the resurrection) ask Jesus a complicated hypothetical question about widowhood and remarriage and the resurrection – they ask which husband of the seven would the woman belong to?  Essentially, Jesus tells them that she would belong to God.  I love that.
God is always inviting us to look at the world in another way.
Inviting us to look beyond our assumptions about ourselves and others.
Inviting us to see that God’s priorities and commitments are different than our own. 
Inviting us to learn that God looks at the world and the human family very differently than we do. 
I love that.. . . . and I find it to be a huge challenge.  You see, if I begin to understand how God sees the world, it changes how I understand the world and the people who surround me.  I can’t really enjoy a snide comment or a bit of well-deserved revenge if I take seriously Jesus’ teaching to love my enemies and treat others like I want to be treated.  You see, the very people I get irritated at, or want to teach a lesson to, belong to God.  Just like that hypothetical woman in question from this week’s gospel (who the religious leaders wanted to turn into an object) the people I would like to treat badly are God’s beloved children.  Embraced and cared for and forgiven, just like me.  Embraced and cared for and forgiven, just like you.  I love that.-ara  (Luke 20:27-38)
Gracious God,
Thank your for the countless ways you show me that the world is different than I imagine.
Open my mind and my heart as I deal with the people and situations that are difficult for me.
Help me to see things from your perspective.
With compassion.  With patience.  With forgiveness. With love.
Help me to see that each person is beloved child.
And help me to remember that includes me.

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