Live-Streaming Love

(from the 2010 Magnificat Lenten Companion)

"Be perfect, just as your heavenly Father is perfect" (Mt 5:48). God's comprehensive love does not discriminate as humans do - between neighbor and alien, friend and foe, just and unjust. God's perfection is not static indifference to the situation of those who are hurting - including those whose wounds in life are self-inflicted, as is the case for us sinners. The shining Son and the precipitation of Spirit are the delight of the righteous, and the dynamic stimulus for conversion in regions of our lives choked off by human caprice. God's perfection is not some cloudy ceiling that we aspire to break through from below; the perfect love embodied in the Son who rises is meant to illuminate and infiltrate our every purpose and inclination, both in season and out. The physician father who took the time to scratch out handwritten notes to his son and daughter each day of their college careers, regardless of whether they were streaming along oblivious to their dad or struggling through a particularly difficult stretch, images something of Jesus' heavenly Father. The prospect of our own perfection is realized in the constancy of our cooperation with a God whose being conditions our own becoming, who draws our pattern of acting into alignment with his own, and whose joy when we respond in kind to one another is recompense enough.

Reflection based on Matthew 5:43-48
Father William M. Joensen

Constantly good Father, continue to bestow the moisture of
Spirit into the hidden recesses of my heart, so that I might reveal
your Son to all persons without heed to how well they love me.

Today's suggested penance: Do something kind for someone who does not like you.