Truly of God

Truly of God

Matthew 5:17-9

“Jesus said to his disciples: “Do not think that I have come to abolish the law but to fulfill the law.”. . .

    For as long as I can remember the Book, the Bible, has been the central guide of my life. My dad read his Bible every night, he taught me the central element of the Bible is love, and that it is fulfilled in Jesus of Nazareth. We are called to make choices, and through the years the choice I made in using the Bible as my guide has been the choice of seeing Jesus, as the heart of the Bible, who calls us to love one another. To make a choice between seeing the Word etched in the stone letter of the law, as St. Paul put it, or the ministry of the Spirit. It is not always straight forward.

    Margaret Funk in her book, Renouncing Violence, examines how to discern whether our actions are truly of God or serving an egotistical outcome. Funk says if our course leads to mercy and compassion, we can feel confident it is of God.

    I spent Saturday, with eighteen year old Brett, who has aged out of foster care, abused by his parents, and is now on the streets. He has been raped a number of times, each time ignored by the police because of “lack of proof”; and his struggle to get mental health treatment hits a brick wall. As does the struggle of so many others.

    I have a dream of medical/psychological  folk–psychiatrists, physicians, dentists, counselors, and psychologists in our City, in our nation, opening themselves to providing services to three people– each for free–to the low income and the homeless. I see medication provided, and in  that dream I see  lives changed leading to health and wholeness.

    In the past year and a half I have had some major medical issues, this last week, I have had some major dental surgery done, and as I walk the streets, I feel guilty, I sometimes cry, because those around me on the streets, those I serve each day, like
Brett have no access. So many  fallen through the cracks. I simply make a phone call, go to my physician or dentist, and am served. Thousands on the street do not have that privilege.

    Jesus makes many consequential choices that ultimately lead to his death. He heals on the Sabbath. He dares to touch lepers and even the dead. He eats with sinners and outcasts. Each time he chooses mercy and compassion over self-preservation and self-gain.

    “Jesus .. .attracts those in need of healing, those who see him as a source of life and wholeness,” Funk writes.

Do we draw others in the same way? Do we reach out into the margins and touch the face of Jesus? Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

Fr. River Damien Sims, sfw, D.Min., D.S.T.

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164


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