Monday, 10 April 2017

Persons beyond actions

Reflection for April 11, 2017: To see the person beyond the action

Jesus' attitude towards Judas is noteworthy. Here is the man who has already betrayed Him, yet Jesus does not throw any tantrum or make a scene out of Judas' pretense. He does not chastise him or humiliate him for his choices. He does not grumble about Judas to the other apostles when he is gone from the room. Jesus is also aware of Peter's betrayal by denial. Yet He still treats them both with dignity and respect.

We may say, it is because Jesus was God, He could be so gracious. But it is the same Jesus who cried out in agony in the garden of Gethsemane asking that if possible, he be spared the suffering. To feel such agony and at the same time not hold it against someone or anyone requires great vision and openness of the heart. It does not come all at once. One needs constantly to make such decisions in small matters of life, to achieve such equanimity at moments of great intensity.

Responding immediately to betrayal or hurt feelings by being angry is natural. Yet Jesus shows through his words and deeds that there are other ways of responding too, when others hurt us deeply… to see the person beyond his or her actions.

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