Jesus selects what others reject

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11 September 2017

The message of today’s Gospel is simple: Jesus selects what others reject.

The actions of the scribes and the Pharisees lacked care, compassion, mercy and love for the man with the withered hand. The belonging that he desired can almost be felt as you imagine the hardship he faced throughout his life. Yet, even as he comes to the synagogue, a place of God, he does not experience the belonging or acceptance his heart desires.

In Jesus’ eyes, the law is there to empower humanity to live a life of grace. When we open our hearts and minds to God, our lives become marked by those very characteristics that the Pharisees lacked.

When Jesus saw this man, he saw him as the most important man in the synagogue. Jesus listened to the voice of his Father to identify his needs over the expectations of the Pharisees. In short, Jesus selected what others rejected.

The Pharisees were blind to the needs of the man, instead they watched, alert to any transgression Jesus might make. Their reaction when Jesus performed the miracle was on of being ‘filled with fury.’ Why? With Jesus the rule of love comes before the rule of law, for the law is there to allow us love.

The beauty of this scripture is that, in the experience of the man, one moment of receiving from Jesus outweighed a lifetime of trying to receive from others. In that moment, Jesus saw the man’s need. Today, Jesus sees your need.

As we enter into today, let us pray to perceive our world through the eyes of Christ, engaging in the needs the Father calls us to answer and respond by bringing life and love to those we encounter.

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