He was full of surprises.
The kind of a person who would baffle anyone.
A very provocative person.
Once his relatives went looking for him because they thought he had lost his mind.
A number of times his enemies accused him of being a glutton and a drunkard.
He even let others make fun of him.
He did not resist the evil done to him.
He was poor and happy.
He knew how to live with abundance and with nothing.
He was merciful.
And he got angry too.
He spoke clearly in everyone’s face.
He said that he and his ‘Father’ were one.
He called worthless what we consider to be a blessing,
and a blessing what we consider to be a curse.
He scandalized many people.
Because he expected them to forgive those who trespass against them.
And even to offer the other cheek to those who hit their right cheek!
The priests of the time insulted him.
They had every reason to dislike him.
You see, he loved them so much that he told them bluntly the truth…
“whitewashed tombs… hypocrites… fools and blind.”
The administration of the time emarginated him.
They had every reason to do it!
This man unveiled the evil egoism and contention of the system.
His friends did not understand him.
And they had every reason not to!
Because he would hang around with people that were ‘suspicious’.
He wasn’t prudent.
Prostitutes and publicans would often be around him.
That was a slippery road… but he would tread bravely on it!
Do not get involved in other people’s trouble, we were always taught
… but he rushed to give a hand wherever there was a need.
They say that virtue is in the middle,
If that is so, Christ had no virtue!
He was so clear: either for me or against me…
either serve God or serve money…
what I want is mercy not sacrifice…
I came to set son against father…
who does not hate his mother, father…
No wonder he broke all dealings with the environment he lived in.
No wonder he was taken to court,
And yet, though killed, he is not dead.
Today Jesus Christ is still alive.
He is still looking for people
who would let Him take hold of them.
who are ready to become Jesus Christ in this generation.
Even if this would mean
going against the trends of society.
Even if this would mean
going beyond prudence and ‘good sense’.
One thing I know, nonetheless…
Who chooses Him
will never be disappointed.
“Who is your like You, majestic in holiness,
terrible in deeds of prowess, worker of wonders?
You stretched your right hand out, the earth swallowed them!
By your grace you led the people you redeemed,
by your strength you guided them to your holy house.
Hearing of this, the peoples tremble:
pangs seize on the inhabitants of Philistia.
Edom’s chieftains are now dismayed,
the princes of Moab fall to trembling,
Canaan’s inhabitants are all unmanned.
Yahweh will be king for ever and ever.”
(c) Fr. Pius Sammut, OCD. Permission is hereby granted for any non-commercial use, provided that the content is unaltered from its original state, if this copyright notice is included.