Thursday, September 12, 2013

Expecting Nothing Back

“And let the peace of Christ control your hearts, the peace into which you were also called in one Body.  And be thankful.  Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly.”  Colossians 3:15-16a
For if you love those who love you, what credit is that to you?  Even sinners love those who love them.  And if you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you?  Even sinners do the same.  If you lend money to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you?  Even sinners lend to sinners, and get back the same amount.  But rather, love your enemies and do good to them, and lend expecting nothing back; then your reward will be great.  Luke 6:32-36b
Looking Up (Three Days in September)
For meditation today, listen to the song linked above by Cletus Kennelly, a local artist.  He wrote this on September 13, 2001.
Jesus did not just turn over the tables on the moneylenders in the temple.  He turned over the tables on everyone as he restated the Golden Rule. 
Literally, to the people listening, they would have to follow the orders of the belligerent Roman forces which occupied ancient Palestine.  If they wanted an Israelite to carry their pack for a mile, Jesus said, “Go two miles.”  And don’t grumble.
When we throw a banquet, Jesus says to invite people who will not feel like they have to invite us back. 
When we attend a banquet, sit in the back.  We may have the host move our seat up.
This test is difficult even for us today.  How do we view the North Koreans, the Iranians and the Syrians?  How do we get past the political enemies list and get to a posture where we can truly love everyone?  How do we love our neighbor no matter where he puts his fence?  How do we manage our social media in a way that does not imply hatred of those who might not share our views?

We are a society which revolves around reciprocity.  Quid begets pro quo.  Jesus says Quid begets more quid. Try to do something today and expect nothing in return. 

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