Monday of the Eleventh Week in Ordinary Time
(II Corinthians 6:1-10; Matthew 5:38-42)
Rodney King became an unlikely prophet twenty-five years ago. The former convict and then alleged victim of police abuse called for reconciliation among peoples during the Los Angeles race riots of 1992. The people were reacting to the acquittal of the police officers who apparently brutalized King while arresting him. Nevertheless, King pleaded for peace: “I just want to say - you know - can we all get along? Can we, can we get along?” Rodney King’s words echo St. Paul’s in today’s first reading.
Paul appeals to his beloved Corinthians to end all strife among themselves. “’Behold now is the acceptable time’” Paul says, “’now is the day of salvation.’” Paul proceeds to use himself as an example for reconciliation. As he has suffered hardship and distress for the sake of the Lord, so should the Corinthians put behind them disagreements and resentments. Mutual love must become the mark of Christians as a testimony to the grace bestowed on them by God through Jesus.
We too must rise above personal preferences and petty differences to embrace one another in solidarity. It becomes difficult when we believe that we are in the right but suffering a loss of esteem or property. Nevertheless, civility should always mark our approach and understanding, our attitude. As long as no one is seriously jeopardized, we probably can afford some loss of resources for the sake of Christ’s peace.