by Paul Robson sj
Have you ever had the experience of feeling love and concern for someone who is outside of your circle of family and friends? Or of loving a complete stranger, even? I can recall a moment in my life when I was on the bus, leaving Thunder Bay. I looked out the window and saw someone walking down the
street. I felt interest, care, concern, even love, for that individual. I would explain that moment of connection, with that person on the street as I looked down from the bus, as being a gift from God.
For God, there are no strangers. Who, then, are we to God, in relation to God? Perhaps it is appropriate to call ourselves the servants of God. Our Creator is the master, and we do our best to do God’s will, as much as we can. While there is truth in the idea that we are God’s servants, Jesus says in today’s Gospel:
“I do not call you servants any longer … but I have called you friends.” We have a friend in Jesus; and while God is greater than us, God is not distant from us.
Peter states, in today’s first reading, that “God shows no partiality.” God loves everyone, as well as all of Creation. What God asks of us, and facilitates in us, is that we love one another. In short, God asks us to be like God! And so there are moments in our lives when we experience love, where this love involves
an unselfish concern for others; and where love begins, certainly, with our near and dear ones, such as our family members. But this love can extend further than that, even to strangers, and even to our “enemies”.
Let us ask God for the gift of love in our lives: that we might be open to God’s love and to the love of others toward us; and that we might, in turn, love others as God loves us.