For National Sisters Week we invited members of the Community of Joseph to share a reflection on Mercy.
Some things in life are exquisitely simple – love is better than hate, sharing is better than hoarding, generosity is better than selfishness, kindness is better than meanness – you can fill in a lot more. Yet, we complicate even these seemingly simple things, often to justify behavior we know is not worthy of us. Hanging on to small (or big) hurts, letting our insecurities get the best of us, allowing our “we’re number one,” materialistic, consumer driven culture entice us to satisfy our every little whim clouds our judgment and impedes the day when “all will be one.”Living our lives believing that there is a God who knows us and loves us allows us to reveal God’s face and heart to the people we share life with and all of our brothers and sisters whose lives are affected by every decision we make. Living from a grounded set of beliefs gives us a frame of reference to live by. “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” comes to mind - and is this not “mercy?”
Everyone guided by mercy and even a few of its synonyms – compassion, charity, tenderness, forgiveness – cannot but help to make life better all around – and isn’t that why we are here?
In this year of mercy, let us, like God, hear the cry of the poor. We pray to be alert, eyes and ears open, sleeves rolled up, to the encounter with Jesus offered to us every day in the disguise of those most in need of mercy.