Jesus said to his disciples:
“Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. Stop judging and you will not be judged. Stop condemning and you will not be condemned. Forgive and you will be forgiven. Give and gifts will be given to you."
Here is the Old Law revised and beautified. So much for those who claim that our ancestors or ancients were thoughtless, ruthless and uncivilized beings. What we have here is our Lord's program of life, given nearly two thousand years ago, for all the world to see. Is there anything evil, immoral, or unwise in his words? Could this not be held in esteem by all, even today? Could it not be put in stone and placed in the United Nations, the Hague, or in Geneva? Is there anything controversial in His words? Would our nation not be better off if it hung in the White House, the Capitol, and the Supreme Court? Would relationships, marriages and families not blossom if at least one of the two were to faithfully abide by it? Yes, one out of the two! Most of all, would I not blossom if I were the one to do so with my words and deeds?
The Lord does not ask us to do something bizarre but something amazing - more amazing, more beautiful than imaginable - and that is to create miracles. Yes, that the blind regain their sight; the deaf hear and the dead rise.
I've been reading the letters of Jacques Fesch, a young french man who was convicted of murder and executed by guillotine on October 1st, 1957. I’ve been fascinated by this young man for a while now. There is no doubt that he committed the crime and there is no doubt that it occasioned his conversion. He died a convict but convicted in the Lord. I first learned about him while reading a portion of one of his letters in the Magnificat. I was shocked when I read the ending, "From the letters of Jacque Fesch, convicted murderer and convert."
How did his conversion take place? With the help and love of convinced Catholics - the prison chaplain, his lawyer, and his mother-in-law. Think about it. What an amazing trio!
There has been a lot of criticism from good and honest individuals toward's this young man's beatification. Cardinal Lustinger of Paris began the process "to give a great hope to those who despise themselves, who see themselves as irredeemably lost." That's good enough reason for me.
When we heed the words of Christ, not only does it change our lives but also the lives of those around us. All it takes is one of us, or three out of the four, to stop judging, stop condemning and start working. It doesn't matter who you are, as long as you are committed to the Lord.