Friday, July 19, 2013

Bruised Reeds and Smoldering Wicks

"A bruised reed he will not break, a smoldering wick he will not quench, until he brings justice to victory." Mt 12:20
All of us are bruised, either by our own families, churches, religious communities or ourselves and our environment. When we fail to listen to our bodies, which never fail to tell us in advance what is happening within us, or our spirits, which we often rush, it is impossible to hear the God who is always present within us and among us. That God promises not to break us when we are bruised assures us of God's patience and compassion. 

In a brief but beautiful book about St Clare, the author, Sr Frances Teresa, a Poor Clare nun, reminds us that we can only be authentically poor when we are generous. In fact, she insists it is God's unfailing generosity, kindness and love for us that makes God poor, and the one we must imitate. When God sees us bruised and bleeding, God reaches out for us, pours himself out and waits for us to respond. It is an amazing image. God's generosity is expressed most completely in giving us the gift of the poor Jesus as companion in life, suffering, death and eventually resurrection.

When we remember that God is always near and anxious to support us when we break or feel like the flame of faith is going out, listen again to the Gospel of Matthew which reminds that is God is closer than we can imagine and wants only what is good for us.

Today, support someone who thinks they are completely broken by sin.

Who or what helped you most when you thought you could not go on?

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