Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Gospel text for Sunday 20 October 2013


Luke 18:1-8        Jesus told his disciples a parable about their need to pray always and not to lose heart. He said, "In a certain city there was a judge who neither feared God nor had respect for people. In that city there was a widow who kept coming to him and saying, `Grant me justice against my opponent.' For a while he refused; but later he said to himself, `Though I have no fear of God and no respect for anyone, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will grant her justice, so that she may not wear me out by continually coming.'" And the Lord said, "Listen to what the unjust judge says. And will not God grant justice to his chosen ones who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long in helping them? I tell you, he will quickly grant justice to them. And yet, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?"
Reflection      Jesus’ parable reminds me of when my daughter was a teenager and the master of persistence... “mom, please.... come on mom... pleeeeeeese.......you know you reallly want to let me.” She was relentless in pleading her case until I was worn down. The good news is, her childhood persistence turned into tenacity; once she sets her heart on something that she believes is right or just she will not give up.
I believe that is what Jesus is trying to teach the disciples and us with this parable. Hold onto righteous causes, never stop praying and never give up. Because when we pray we are aligning ourselves in God. When we are aligned in God there is a clear, open channel through which God’s presence and God’s power can flow to bring about justice.... even among people who, like the unjust judge, mutter under their breath, “I have no fear of God and no respect for anyone, yet because this widow keeps bothering me I will grant her justice...” Yes, God brings about justice even through the unjust.
By linking persistence in prayer with issues of justice Jesus expands the notion of justice from ethics, moral rightness and law to include the spiritual dimension, which is to say, to include God. Justice is more than punishment imposed in response to a proven crime. Justice is more than retaliation, quid pro quo, a life for a life. Justice is more than restorative which provides for a victim to be made whole and for a perpetrator to understand and take responsibility for their offense and be reintegrated in society.
Justice is the will of God that all people have access to dignity, resources and power. This is distributive justice; the reallocation of resources among all peoples. “ This is the justice that Jesus brought to life throughout his minsitry; food for the hungry, healing for the sick, forgiveness for sinners and friendship for the marginalized. The will of God is to dignify, resource and empower all people. Our job is to align our will in God’s and secure justice for all peoples.  The way we do that is by praying ceaselessly and never giving up.
**Salvador Dali  "Geological Justice"
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