Monday, July 17, 2006

Peace or division?

This morning at Mass Jesus' words in the Gospel especially struck me: "I have not come to bring peace but division." Then he goes on to say how families will be divided because of him.

It's a mystery to ponder. I think that Jesus isn't saying he wants to deliberately cause division, but that knowing the realities of human life, his message will in fact divide people. Those who want to follow it will be divided from those who don't. I recall the vocation story of one young woman who tried religious life over the violent opposition of her parents. There are many others like that.

What are your thoughts about this Gospel passage?


Moneybags said...

I have heard similar stories. One was of a young woman that wanted to become Catholic. Her father forbid her, but she followed Our Lord. Finally, a few years later, he spoke to her again. But, more than that, she wanted to become a nun. Her father said that she would never see him again if she did, but she followed Our Lord anyway. Finally, years later, the father came to the monastery and sat in the guest area waiting for his daughter. The conversation he had with the nuns there truly opened his mind.

We have to remember that not everyone will accept the message of Jesus. But, no matter what anyone else says, we must accept and follow Our Lord.

Moneybags said...

I just realized the typo in my comment. I meant "convent" not "monastery". Sorry about that.

laurathecrazymama said...

I've often wondered about that statement as well. I think about it when I sass about something that bugs me about our church. I think about it when people in our church try to be too much like other religions and quit focusing on the Eucharist. I think about it when people argue that Jesus would want peace in EVERY situation. It is a mystery.

yana yaacov said...

It is a radical decision, giving your life to Christ and it also has the worst enemy in the world doing his best to prevent it. My country was under muslim influence for 500 years and our history knows times when people had to choose to become muslims or die. We often call this period *Time of parting*.
But my nation is a Christian nation stil:)

I agree that Lord's message divides peopleq even when both sides desire peace.

Robin L. in TX said...

I think it also has meaning within each individual, unless I am very different from everyone else.

I sometimes find that doing the right thing is difficult, and that it is a battle royal trying to get my inclinations lined up with what I know I should do.

It is not enough to do the right thing (Old Testament) but we also have to try to do the right thing with a loving heart (Sermon on the Mount).

For me, the struggle has sometimes been painful and difficult. It is clear to me why Jacob's wrestling with the angel is seen as an inner struggle to do the right thing when meeting his brother.

Frank said...

I think his point is that we must first love God, and then our fellow man. We cannot sacrifice truth to be friendly or agreeable.

Being Christian is very divisive. Christians don't have sex before marriage. They don't get drunk at parties. They don't do much of the things that others do. This not only divides them, but causes real divisions between them and those who do not love God's law.

Following God's law, rather than the current popular culture is divisive.