Monday, November 17, 2014



Mark Roberts examines the ministry of Henri Nouwen and wonders:
It's true Adam’s limitations would keep him from performing tasks we accomplish each day. But, could Adam's limitations teach us something about working with our own? I’m wondering if our first step, like Adam, is to more deeply embrace the power of being, recognizing that the greatest gift we give our coworkers and our vocations is who we are. Could it be that our best “doings” on the job will flow most freely and naturally out of us simply being our truest selves?
If we worry about "our worth" that makes a lot of sense. But Nouwen CARED for Adam, he was not Adam. Adam's worth, as is ours, is intrinsic. I don't think the problem this world faces is discovering that fact - rather I think it is in finding someone so unimpressed with themselves that they are will to care for the Adams of the world.

I know too many people that think they have more important things to do than care for the infirmed, aged parent that can no longer care for themselves. Often in my neighborhood I see groups of the severely disabled on little field trips to the convenience store from whatever group care setting they are in while their loved ones tend to "more important business."

I am not advocating for abandoning your job for the sake of caring for someone like that, I am more talking about the attitude of "having to find something to do with such people, so I can get on with my life." You see this reflected in churches that refuse the sacraments to the mentally disabled - such people are viewed as disruptive to the service, or incapable of forming sufficient understanding to participate. And yet, God loves them just as much - so should we.

There are two ways we can view those that cannot care for themselves. One we can pity them and feel sorry for them. Two we can value them as worthy of our attention and care. Anymore it seems that pity, an emotion that should be born of love and drive us to care has become an emotion of dismissal. When we pity someone, we are writing them off in a very real fashion. When Christ asked god to forgive us becasue we did not know what we were doing, was that born of pity? I don't think so - it was born of love. Can we do less for those that are not even capable of understanding what they are doing?


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