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Browsing Reflections Archive

January 20, 2022

Daily Reflection for Friday, January 21 2022
 

Peace and Blessings, Friends and Parishioners,

We encourage you to reflect on Friday’s readings at this link:
https://bible.usccb.org/bible/readings/012122.cfm

If you prefer to use your own Bible, the readings are:
First Reading: 1 Samuel 24:3-21
Responsorial: Psalm 57:2-6, 11
Gospel: Mark 3:13-19

Our reflection on Friday’s reading:
“Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy on me, for in you I take refuge…”  Psalm 57:2

I’m sure that I cannot fully relate to the depths of mercy that David was praying for as I have never faced a life and death situation like David was facing.  Nor have I been faced with making a merciful decision to spare the life of an enemy who may later turn on me or people that depend on my decision-making to keep them safe.  David’s deeply personal prayer to God to show him mercy was answered, and his response was not violence and retaliation but to show mercy to Saul.

Many generations later Jesus showed mercy to the outcasts of society and to all of us through his death and resurrection.  As he calls his disciples to follow him, he shows them that it is mercy, not power that defines his mission.   There is no doubt that Jesus would have been familiar with stories of Saul and David as monarchs of Israel and the many misdeeds that powerful leaders can engage in.  Jesus saw the world that he could serve, not one that he led and controlled.

I can imagine the debates, arguments, and discussions over the scriptures that Jesus and his disciples had, but in this particular story of David sparing Saul’s life, I can hear Jesus saying to his disciples that in this one instance, David got it right.  He asked God for a solution, listened, and received an answer to his prayer and showed Saul mercy just as God had shown him mercy.

How are we doing some two millennia later after Jesus showed the human race ultimate mercy on the cross?  I think that we are where we have always been.  There are those that continue to seek power and those that cry out individually to their Lord and Savior “Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy on me, for in you I take refuge.”

Paul Gunn

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