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Letters from Tim

Dear Friends,

The gospel reading for this coming Sunday is Mark 4: 35 – 41 when a storm suddenly threatens Jesus and the disciples on Lake Galilee. Of course we know the end of the story and so do not share the real fear of the disciples who, in spite of their long credentials as fishermen, cry out to Jesus: ‘Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?’

An understandable accusation to someone who is asleep on the job. But an accusation that can be easily used against those we feel are out of touch, or not aware, or distracted away from the pressing issues.

Unfortunately, the list of things to care about is all too long: climate change, injustice and poverty, homelessness, etc. And we can use the accusation of not caring as a big stick to beat others with, especially if things don’t go as we would like.

Being accused of not caring by those closest to us can really hurt and do damage.

Of course, in the story the disciples have got it right, they are perishing, as are we all without the saving grace of Jesus. What they didn’t get right was their question about whether he cared or not. The establishment didn’t think Jesus cared about tradition and the normal practices of the faith. What he cared about he showed in his approach to those he healed, befriended, and spent time with.

His care was such that it took him to the cross, and beyond. His care was for all. His care was immersed in the midst of the storms of people’s lives. The word ‘compassion’ means ‘suffering with’, ‘suffering alongside’, which sums up Jesus coming to us, living among us, and absorbing all the hurt and hate people could throw at him.

Peace

Tim


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