Love Your Enemy,
Drawing by Randell Summerford,
Drawn in 2017,
Pencils and crayons on paper
© Randell Summerford Art

Love Your Enemy,
Drawing by Randell Summerford,
Drawn in 2017,
Pencils and crayons on paper
© Randell Summerford Art

Gospel of 26 February 2024

Grant pardon, and you will be pardoned

Luke 6:36-38

Jesus said to his disciples: ‘Be compassionate as your Father is compassionate. Do not judge, and you will not be judged yourselves; do not condemn, and you will not be condemned yourselves; grant pardon, and you will be pardoned. Give, and there will be gifts for you: a full measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over, will be poured into your lap; because the amount you measure out is the amount you will be given back.’

Reflection on the drawing

In today’s gospel reading, we find a number of short, memorable sayings of Jesus, all variations on the theme that we should love one another, and love even our enemies. These short sayings include 'Be compassionate as your Father is compassionate. Do not judge, and you will not be judged '...  Jesus is suggesting that when we are kind to others, we will receive more than we give.

Our little drawing is titled 'Love your Enemies'. The drawing is pretty self explanatory: normally a rabbit and a dog would be after each other, chasing one another. Maybe not exactly enemies, but still. Our drawing and its title suggest that indeed what seem to be opposite characters, can always get along.

The word 'enemy' always strikes us as a harsh word. Many of us don't really have enemies, at least we don't think we have. Yes of course, some people we like more than others and we get on better with certain people. But true enemies? The point Jesus is making is that the people we like less or get on with the least, are exactly the people who can bring out the very best in us. They can bring out healthy competition and motivate us to achieve even more. Their negative comments or attitude towards us can make us see our own faults better and help us improve.

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Mark Crain
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Mark Crain
1 month ago

I try not to gloss over phrases in the Bible that I do not understand. Today’s imagery, “…pressed down, shaken together, and running over…” is an example. A quick search makes the meaning obvious; it comes from the market practices of the time. When buying goods such as grain, the seller would fill the buyer’s container and then press down and shake the contents to make room for more, ensuring the buyer received a generous portion.

Peace be with you all today.

Patricia O'Brien
Member
Patricia O'Brien
1 month ago
Reply to  Mark Crain

Now that is the image that appeals to me most of all. I pour my flour or cereal into a container and it looks full..but shake it or tap the box and a lot more can go in. How generous the Lord is to me, giving the maximum forgiveness, love, compassion. I said the other day about forgiveness being a ‘disposition of the heart’ and to that I must say that it’s not automatic with me at all. I can be seething then suddenly remember…🙄

Noelle Clemens
Member
Noelle Clemens
1 month ago

I love that phrase “disposition of the heart”, Patricia. Poetic, and therefore memorable.

Mark Crain
Member
Mark Crain
1 month ago
Reply to  Noelle Clemens

¡Yo también!

Noelle Clemens
Member
Noelle Clemens
1 month ago
Reply to  Mark Crain

That’s such a good image, Mark, it touches the heart.

Elvira
Member
Elvira
1 month ago

I hope this poem by JAN TWARDOWSKI is well translated. I think it is beautiful

LET’S HURRY

Let’s hurry to love, people leave so soon,
They just leave behind their shoes and a dumb phone.

Only the futile crawls heavily,
the important thing is so fast that it happens suddenly
and then a normal silence and so unbearable,
as the purity born of the simplest grief,
when we think of someone and run out.

Don’t be so sure you have time, sure is insecure,
takes away the sensitive as all bliss,
comes simultaneously as humour and solemnity,
like two passions always weaker than one.

They disappear as soon as the thrush is silent in July,
as a somewhat awkward sound or as a deaf reverence.

To see truly close their eyes,
It’s more risky to be born than to die.

We always love little and too late.

Don’t write about this often,
but once and for all
and you’ll be like a good, strong dolphin.

Let’s hurry to love, people leave so soon
and those who do not leave, do not always return
and when talking about love you never know if the first
is the last or the last the first.

Noelle Clemens
Member
Noelle Clemens
1 month ago
Reply to  Elvira

Thank you very much, Elvira, for introducing us to this wonderful Polish poet. So many true and beautiful lines. Did you translate from a Spanish
version? X

Chazbo M
Member
Chazbo M
1 month ago
Reply to  Noelle Clemens

Yes that would be interesting to know.

Elvira
Member
Elvira
1 month ago
Reply to  Chazbo M

Si quieres la versión en español …., la cuelgo para que practiques

Noelle Clemens
Member
Noelle Clemens
1 month ago
Reply to  Elvira

¡Por favor! 😊

Elvira
Member
Elvira
1 month ago
Reply to  Noelle Clemens

DÉMONOS PRISA

Démonos prisa a amar, la gente se va tan pronto,
sólo dejan tras ellos sus zapatos y un teléfono mudo.

Sólo lo fútil se arrastra pesadamente,
lo importante es tan veloz que sucede de repente
y luego un silencio normal y por eso insoportable,
como la pureza nacida del más simple desconsuelo,
cuando pensamos en alguien y nos quedamos sin él.

No estés tan seguro de tener tiempo, lo seguro es inseguro,
nos quita lo sensible como toda dicha,
llega simultáneamente como el humor y lo solemne,
como dos pasiones siempre más débiles que una.

Desaparecen tan pronto como calla el tordo en julio,
como un sonido algo torpe o como una sorda reverencia.

Para ver de verdad cierran los ojos,
aunque es más arriesgado nacer que morir.

Amamos siempre poco y demasiado tarde.

No escribas sobre esto con frecuencia,
sino de una vez por todas
y serás como un delfín bondadoso y fuerte.

Démonos prisa a amar, la gente se va tan pronto
y los que no se van, no siempre vuelven
y al hablar de amor nunca se sabe si el primero
es el último o el último el primero.

JAN TWARDOWSKI

Noelle Clemens
Member
Noelle Clemens
1 month ago
Reply to  Elvira

Muchas gracias por colgarlo, Elvira. 💐

Elvira
Member
Elvira
1 month ago
Reply to  Noelle Clemens

Encantada 🙂

Elvira
Member
Elvira
1 month ago
Reply to  Noelle Clemens

No lo encontré en inglés y lo he traducido como he podido 😩. A mi me parece un gran poeta, espero que lo podáis encontrar mejor traducido que yo. Lo he traducido de la versión en español, no del polaco

Noelle Clemens
Member
Noelle Clemens
1 month ago
Reply to  Elvira

Lo ha muy bien hecho, Elvira – ¡felicidades!

Elvira
Member
Elvira
1 month ago
Reply to  Noelle Clemens

On Netflix there is a documentary where many people read poems by JAN TWARDOWSKI. They speak Polish but they sound so beautiful … and we can read the subtitles… I recommend it 😃.¡ He was a great poet !

Noelle Clemens
Member
Noelle Clemens
1 month ago
Reply to  Elvira

Unfortunately we do not have Netflix, but I will try Google and YouTube.

Last edited 1 month ago by Noelle Clemens
Elvira
Member
Elvira
1 month ago

I think we all want to be happy but sometimes we go the wrong way. In today’s Gospel Jesus offers us some basic guidelines for achieving this: selfless love that expects nothing in return and is open to enemies. The text invites us to think about the people for whom we feel no affection ….(Since when, for what reasons?) , and as far as we are willing to go to come to their aid ….. in danger of death even the greatest enemies respond?

Noelle Clemens
Member
Noelle Clemens
1 month ago

Better make it clear! Love puppies, bunnies, kittens, etc., just not fond of this painting….🐕🐰

Elvira
Member
Elvira
1 month ago
Reply to  Noelle Clemens

¡Queda claro! 🤣😂

Noelle Clemens
Member
Noelle Clemens
1 month ago
Reply to  Elvira

😊 ¡más vale prevenir que lamentar!!

lara sacco
Member
lara sacco
1 month ago

Penso che ci venga chiesto di esercitare la nostra capacità di giudizio ma rimanere aperti.
Posso riconoscere il male che le persone compiono, ma ricordarmi che le persone non sono “il male”. Rimaniamo aperti!
Quando do un giudizio che fissa qualcuno, posso chiedermi: “e se mi sbagliassi?”.
Quando divido le mie conoscenze tra amiche e nemiche, posso imparare dalla vita, e scoprire che un amico può farmi molto male e un nemico tendermi una mano.
Voglio rimanere aperta, e credere che siamo umani, sbagliamo ma possiamo cambiare. Non perdiamo la speranza nella bontà che abita ogni uomo. Penso che questo sia lo sguardo di Dio su ciascuno di noi.

Chazbo M
Member
Chazbo M
1 month ago
Reply to  lara sacco

I think we are being asked to exercise our judgment but remain open-minded.
I can recognize the evil that people do, but remember that people are not “evil.” Let’s stay open!
When I make a judgment that stares at someone, I can ask myself, “What if I’m wrong?”
When I divide my acquaintances between friends and foes, I can learn from life, and find that a friend can hurt me a lot and an enemy can lend me a hand.
I want to stay open, and believe that we are human, we make mistakes but we can change. Let us not lose hope in the goodness that dwells in every human being. I think this is God’s gaze on each one of us.
The examples below have been automat

Noelle Clemens
Member
Noelle Clemens
1 month ago
Reply to  Chazbo M

Thanks, Chazbo.

Chazbo M
Member
Chazbo M
1 month ago
Reply to  lara sacco

Thank you Lara. Very profound.
I have taken the liberty of translating your wisdom!

lara sacco
Member
lara sacco
1 month ago
Reply to  Chazbo M

Thank you Chazbo

Patricia O'Brien
Member
Patricia O'Brien
1 month ago
Reply to  lara sacco

Tanti auguri Lara 😊

Noelle Clemens
Member
Noelle Clemens
1 month ago

In the end, we become the sum of our actions and decisions over the years, the thousand judgements made over time make us either, as is mentioned later in this chapter, trees bearing good fruit, or bad fruit; with hearts full of goodness, or evil, “For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.” Obviously, we’re all a mixture, being works very much in progress! Luke 6 is full of ideals to be aimed for.
Does anyone know of Edward Hicks, the American Quaker painter and itinerant preacher, active in the early 1800’s? He painted over sixty versions of The Peaceable Kingdom, based on Isaiah 11. All the paintings show natural enemies living side by side. I’ll try and post one version. If I’m unsuccessful, a few can be seen on-line. For me, they convey the idealism of Jesus’ words better than today’s puppy and bunny picture.

Edward_Hicks_-_The_Peaceable_Kingdom_c1833_-_MeisterDrucke-575622
spaceforgrace
Member
spaceforgrace
1 month ago
Reply to  Noelle Clemens

I’m unsure of the idealism here? Maybe I should think about this passage a bit more!

Noelle Clemens
Member
Noelle Clemens
1 month ago
Reply to  spaceforgrace

The idealism of naturally antagonistic beings existing peaceably together, as in the puppy and bunny? I was also thinking of “love your enemies”, which occurs just before our passage.

Elvira
Member
Elvira
1 month ago
Reply to  Noelle Clemens

This picture is much better chosen to represent today’s gospel, and the reference to Isaiah 11 is very appropriate. I take this opportunity to read Isaiah today, what a good read! Thank you, Noelle

Elvira
Member
Elvira
1 month ago
Reply to  Elvira

Isaias11, 6-9
The wolf will dwell with the lamb
and the leopard shall lie down beside the kid;
the calf and the lion cub will graze together,
and a small child will lead them;
the cow and the bear will live in company,
their young will lie down together,
and the lion shall eat straw as the ox.
The breast child will play
over the cobra hole,
and in the cave of the viper
the weaned child will reach in.
There will be no harm or havoc
in all my holy mountain,
because the knowledge of the Lord will fill the earth
as the waters cover the sea.

A new era, which the prophet expresses as a paradoxical situation in which a series of enemy animals coexist paradoxically peacefully. A new time in which violence, fear or injustice will no longer have a place “because the country is full of the Lord’s knowledge, as the waters fill the sea”.

Chazbo M
Member
Chazbo M
1 month ago
Reply to  Noelle Clemens

That’s sweet 🍬

Chazbo M
Member
Chazbo M
1 month ago

Well this is interesting – how to deal with people who are really getting annoying and pushing their agenda over yours. Just lying down infront of aggression doesn’t work. There are times when you have to draw a line are there not?

So we understand the broad message in the gospel reading today but in our daily lives, unfortunately, we have to make judgements and negotiate through grey areas.

spaceforgrace
Member
spaceforgrace
1 month ago
Reply to  Chazbo M

I don’t think love is lying down to aggression. I believe it is the opposite. I don’t agree it is a ‘broad’ message either, but a very specific one.

Chazbo M
Member
Chazbo M
1 month ago
Reply to  spaceforgrace

My neighbour built his extension partly in my back garden!
How should I have dealt with that!?
Hang on, I think I have been taken over by the spirit of Thimas!!!

Patricia O'Brien
Member
Patricia O'Brien
1 month ago
Reply to  Chazbo M

Civility – but that’s all. I doubt there’s any grey area there (which is what our friend Thimas usually questions)

Noelle Clemens
Member
Noelle Clemens
1 month ago
Reply to  Chazbo M

How did you deal with it….?!

Chazbo M
Member
Chazbo M
1 month ago
Reply to  Noelle Clemens

He got really aggressive. I said I would let it go if he made a donation to a good cause of my chosing but he didn’t want to do that, I then had the option of going the legal route, there is a word which I can’t remember but that was going to get very expensive so I let him get away with it 😣.

Noelle Clemens
Member
Noelle Clemens
1 month ago
Reply to  Chazbo M

Oh, genuinely am sorry, how horrible, but yours is the greater stature, you really “gave him your shirt”.

Moira Cunningham
Member
Moira Cunningham
1 month ago

I love this gospel reading because I’ve experienced the mercy and love of God as so very many of us have. Think Luke’s words are my favourites.

spaceforgrace
Member
spaceforgrace
1 month ago

It is a call to arms Moira!

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