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March 13, Labik - Jesuits of North-West Africa Province | Society of Jesus

Monday, Second Week of Lent

March 13, 2017

Dn 9:4b-10  Lk. 6:26-38

by *Mr. Linus Labik

On some occasions, we mention our surnames and a question comes up to link us to someone of the same surname. Either way, our name will ring a positive or a negative emotion. Who is that Father Jesus is asking us to be like? Why is Jesus asking us to be like our Father utilising one nature – compassion? Because, it is that nature of God that Daniel is appealing to in the first reading. Daniel recounts the cause of their punishment and asks for mercy and pardon. Compassion is that feeling where the other person is our mirror image; that feeling where the other person reflects our inner self!

When we are able to accept that our frailties are the same as that of our neighbour, it is easier not to judge them. When we accept that just as we can fail, others can fail, it is easier not to condemn. When we are able to accept that just as we hurt others through our failings, it is easier to forgive others when we are hurt; for when we forgive, it is easier to go to God to ask for forgiveness.

Jesus expects us to give not only our material wealth but our humanity as well. God didn't keep his only begotten Son from us. He offered Him as a sacrifice for our salvation. It is in the same way that He asks us to be like our Father in giving all the good within us and not keeping anything for ourselves. The reward for giving will be measured using the scale which we used. What about the "reward" for not giving? Will it also be "a full measure, pressed down, shaken together and overflowing"? Would we be that welcoming of that "reward"?

Daniel and his generation had inherited a bad name and were suffering a punishment! Probably they were not even part of those who sinned and yet that "reward" was poured into their laps. How would you respond when someone recounts the hurts and pains suffered at the hands of your father? Would you seek recompense or give excuses for the harm done? Daniel understood how God felt and sought recompense for his generation. No one was blameless, for those who could push for the right things to be done chose silence. Others also chose to follow the crowd.

Many a times we are quick to jump into judgement seats to judge and condemn others for what we see as wrongs. Probably, before we take the judgement seat, we should take the accused's stand, so we can come to terms with our own frailties.

Our Father neither judges nor condemns us. He knows how frail we are and is always willing to have mercy and forgive us. He requires that we also exhibit this nature and that we see ourselves in the other person.

*Mr. Linus Labik is a happily married Investment Adviser and Planner who worships at St. Ignatius Catholic Church, Baatsona, Accra, Ghana, which is run by the Jesuits.  

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