Matthew’s gospel, (18:1-5, 10, 12-14)
At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” And calling to him a child, he put him in the midst of them, and said, “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child, he is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. Whoever receives one such child in my name receives me… See that you do not despise one of these little ones; for I tell you that in heaven their angels always behold the face of my Father who is in heaven. What do you think? If a man has a hundred sheep, and one of them has gone astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine on the mountains and go in search of the one that went astray? And if he finds it, truly, I say to you, he rejoices over it more than over the ninety-nine that never went astray. So it is not the will of my Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish.”
Is that the sensible thing to do? Leave 99 sheep and look for 1 and put the 99 at risk. In today’s world, do businesses that loses 1% focus on the 1%, or try to maintain and grow the 99% of his business? Many would say the sensible thing to do would be to managed the 99% and forget about the other 1%.
What about the parable of the Prodigal Son who takes his inheritance and squanders it away on fun, foolishness and prostitution? He ends up with nothing, whereby; he has nothing, “not even scraps that dogs get from their Master.” He is forced to go back home to his father and what does the father do? Does he lay in judgment of his lost son, or when he sees his son coming home, throws a celebration, slaughters the fattest calf, gets the finest clothes for him and welcomes him home with no questions, or no judgments of his actions? Is that what most people would do in the same situation?
Is the father acting sensibly? Just as our Lord was not acting sensibly, or doing what we might have done in the same situation, the Prodigal son’s father was not acting sensibly. He was doing what Our Lord expects us to do; to show love and mercy to all under all circumstances. No questions and no judgment of their actions!
God is asking all of us to be childlike; not childish. He is asking us to be humble, loving and trusting in Him, as children do with their parents. God is a God of love and mercy and that is why He had to find the lost sheep. That is why the Prodigal Son was welcomed home with love, mercy and understanding and no judgment of his actions.
How can we stop being sensible with those around us? How can we eliminate an eye for an eye when someone does something to us? That may be sensible or make us feel better getting even with others, but being sensible is not what we are call to do. How can we criticize people, judge people when we ourselves, are not judged by God?
The God of Love and Mercy.
Time for us to work on our changes?
Be Childlike; not childish.
Find a Way!