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Monday, April 27, 2015

Do you often hold back in doing things right by the need to follow prescribed rules? - Daily Reflections April 27,2015


REJOICING IN THE FULL MEASURE
OF GOD’S GRACE
 
Our opening prayer asks God to “bring us to rejoice in the full measure of [His] grace.” We humans love to give in half measures. When we play, we wouldn’t even give an inch to our opponent. We weigh. We calculate what we give and count the potential returns of our largesse. But we expect God, and ask God, to bring us to rejoicing to the full.
        I heard about the story of a Protestant couple who risked their lives to help Catholic victims during the Second World War in Poland. When the couple also died, the people asked their pastor if they could be buried in the Catholic cemetery. The pastor refused. So, out of obedience, they buried the couple closest to the boundaries of the Catholic cemetery, near the fence. During the night, the people went back to the cemetery and did something unthinkable. They moved the fence to include the lovely and lovable couple within the confines of the Catholic cemetery.
       Peter was facing a brewing controversy. Believers who were not originally Jewish were getting cozy with observant Jews. They complained to Peter. Peter patiently taught them and convinced them to allow the non- Jewish converts to also rejoice in the full measure of God’s grace, without bias, without borders, without resentment.
        We humans can be too focused on doing the right things but miss out on the need to do them rightly. Last year, Pope Francis surprised us with a fresh wisp of pastoral charity. He alluded, in Evangelii Gaudium, to what he calls “diagnostic overload,” which to my mind means remaining in the state of paralysis (or inaction) due to endless analysis.
         Come on, fellow believer. “Athirst is my soul for the living God.” And so is everyone else. All men and women are called to the glorious liberty of God’s children. Who are we to deny that “God has granted life-giving repentance to the Gentiles too?” Fr. Chito Dimaranan, SDB
 
REFLECTION QUESTION: Do you often hold back in doing things right by the need to follow prescribed rules?
 
Grant me wisdom, Lord, to know how to do things rightly in every situation I find myself in.

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