Today’s contemplation is on compassion. Linked to the previous day’s focus on suffering, compassion is our response to someone else’s suffering. It’s the tears I shed for the pain someone else bears.
As I made my way through the scriptures the author includes for our focus and the prayer texts Yaconelli includes, I became aware of the correlation between the Matthew 25:35-37 poem and the famous prayer of St. Francis, Lord, Let me be an instrument of your peace. An epiphany, if you will.
Allow me to interpolate them here. The Matthew scripture uses the New Standard Revised Version of the Bible. St. Francis prayer will be in bold italics.
Then the king will say to those at his right hand, ‘Come, you that are blessed by my Father,
inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world;
Lord, Make me an instrument of your peace. Where there is hatred, let me sow love.
35 for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink,
where there is injury, pardon
I was a stranger and you welcomed me, where there is doubt, faith
36 I was naked and you gave me clothing, where there is despair, hope
I was sick and you took care of me, where there is darkness light
I was in prison and you visited me. where there is sadness, joy.
O, Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand; to be loved as to love;
For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
it is in dying that we are born again to eternal life.