by Sarah Brock
AM Psalm 56, 57, 58 PM Psalm 64, 65
Wisdom 9:1, 7-18; Colossians 3:18-4:18;
There are certainly times looking back over my life where I have been this woman. Moments of pain, sorrow, and defeat. Feeling low with the sense that I had everything to lose and grateful to cling to faith. Grateful to kneel beside Jesus and bathe his feet in my tears. Pouring out love because it seemed to be all I had left. Taking the bread and the wine and Christ into my body and my soul.
There are also times, that I have been the Pharisee. Welcoming Jesus sincerely, but without much heart. Occasionally even judging the others who join me at the table, kneeling beside me.
Where do you find yourself in this story today?
Are you Simon, welcoming Jesus a little half-heartedly?
Are you the woman, pouring out love in tears of sorrow and gratitude?
Or, perhaps, you find yourself in one of the others at the table? Observing the interaction and wondering who you believe this man is who forgives sins.
Regardless of where I locate myself in this encounter, I always find it to be a helpful reminder. A prompt to approach Christ, whether at the altar or in a neighbor, with great love. An exhortation to keep my faith from becoming automatic and thoughtless, taking it for granted.
But mostly, this story reminds me to pay attention to who is with me at the table.
‘With whom are you eating?’ A wise friend once taught me to pay attention to this question. A question I like to periodically revisit. I’ve learned that if the answer is ‘people that are just like me,’ then I’m probably also going to identify with the Pharisee. Breaking bread with people who are different- different faiths, different races, different economic status- is most often when my heart is broken open. This is when I am most open to forgiveness and love.
What about you, with whom are you eating?
Sarah Brock is becoming a postulant in the Diocese of Massachusetts and lives in Boston.
Image Credit: Wikimedia