Saturday 26 December 2015

Monday of the 4th Week of Easter

One of the things that ought to change when we become Christians is that we should no longer be divided or segregated according to ethnic group, language group, racial lines or whatever that had segregated us in the past. We are brothers and sisters in Christ; not brothers and sisters in Christ according to a certain group, or language, or social status; but brothers and sisters in Christ, full stop. What this means is, we are no longer strangers or foreigners to each other, but one family with Jesus as our brother, Mary as our mother, God as our Father. If we live according to such basic principles, then we should experience peace and happiness in unity with diversity. But are we really living as brothers and sisters in Christ, or are we still distinguishing ourselves according to groups, factions or some other criteria?

In today's reading, the Jews were initially unhappy that the pagans or the uncircumcised had been baptised. These Jews thought that Jesus belonged only to their club, and all others are to be excluded. But Peter made them realise that God does not limit Himself only to certain groups or certain persons. He is God for all, and He loves us all the same, regardless of who we are, or where we come from, since the reading tells us: "'God' they said 'can evidently grant even the pagans the repentance that leads to life.'"

If God is a God for all, then what about us? Are we still keeping only to our group, our social status, our prejudices, our comfort zones? Or have we learnt to come out and mix around, as brothers and sisters in Christ, one family of God? Are we living and loving as brothers and sisters in Christ, without terms or conditions? Or are we still trapped in our old self and old ways?

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