Good morning, happy Thursday, and many blessings.
The Gospel today (Luke 19:41-44) tells us that Jesus, when he saw Jerusalem as he approached, began to shed tears and to pronounce a very dark future for the city of His people.
For us Christians, there is no exclusively holy place, although certain places are of special significance to us. But, as Paul reminds us, each baptized person is a temple of the Spirit and is to act as such and be respected as such. “Wherever two or three are gathered together in my name, there I am in the midst of them,” Jesus told his disciples (Matthew 18:20).
Jesus wept over his city because he felt deep sorrow at its resistance to God’s word, as he foresaw the disaster it would soon face. I too can look around me, at this country and the rest of the world, and feel sorrow at so much disregard for truth and for what is right, at so much corruption and all the suffering it brings in its wake.
‘Blessed are those who mourn, they shall be comforted’. Lord help me never to get used to the evil around me, keep my heart sensitive to the selfishness and abuse of power that is the cause of so much suffering. I pray especially never to close my heart to migrants in their struggles.
We often see Jesus filled with longing for the people he meets as the sick and sinners come before him he invites them to see their wholeness before God. Here, he looks at the city of Jerusalem and prays for its populace, wishing that it might receive what God is offering. If I consider how Jesus looks at me, I realize that he longs for my growth, for me to embrace all the possibilities that God offers to me each day.
Images of threat and destruction can haunt and immobilize us if we neglect to see that there is always an alternative, an offer of life. If these words of Jesus appear to be grim, I listen again to notice what he is longing for. Peace and contentment are two blessings that we desire in life and when we lack them, we are greatly disturbed. Jesus, too, was disturbed and wept at the future destruction of his beloved Jerusalem. He offers us a peace that the world cannot give and can only be found in friendship with him.
I know what it is like when friends can’t see what is good for them. As I listen to Jesus yearning for Jerusalem, I allow his gaze to fall lovingly on me. What does he long for me to wake up to?
My prayer is my practice of seeking God’s perspective, a way of listening out for the voice I might otherwise miss. Perhaps I can see how I have grown, how less is hidden from my eyes.
Now I ask you: are you crying over the situation that we are currently going through here in the United States because of the electoral uncertainty that this administration is causing? Would Jesus shed tears? As hopeless as it may seem, can't we lose the action of faith to produce results of peace with justice? Let's not forget, we can bring paradise to earth, here and now.
Now, let's make a point very clear; the injustices that occur on this earth make Jesus cry. But at the same time, my spiritual apathy and social quietism also make him cry. Therefore, creating a world filled with peace with justice will prevent Jesus from crying.