Editor’s Note: Contributor Christine Moughamian is blogging each day of Lent about her progress becoming “one brave Christian.” Follow her experiment on Twitter @1bravechristian.
If Jesus Christ had told my story yesterday, he might have called it “The Parable of the Meek and the Greedy.”
As “one brave Christian,” I’m committed to serving two hours a week at St. Mary Catholic Church’s Tileston Social Outreach. Yesterday, I was assigned an experienced volunteer who trained me to read the guests’ charts and provide them with appropriate supplies.
All seemed to run smoothly until an “incident” occurred.
In the check-out room, a guest started to grab everything in sight to the detriment of another guest seated in a corner, quiet and meek. When asked to limit the number of items taken, the domineering guest responded with seeming arrogance.
A wave of discontent ran through us all. Later on, behind closed doors, judgment was passed in hushed tones.
“Greedy,” I heard someone say about the domineering guest.
“Greedy with an attitude,” I heard myself say.
I couldn’t believe those words actually came out of my own mouth.
At the first opportunity, I walked out of the building to my car. It took me but a moment to take a few deep breaths, center my thoughts and pray.
“Beloved God, trusting in the power of prayer, we pray and affirm that you are now in the midst of us, made manifest as forgiveness, understanding, compassion and gratitude.”
After a few moments, I returned to my task refreshed and renewed.
However, a group of volunteers had gathered in another room. They were still talking about the whole situation. I noticed a volunteer standing off at a distance, alone. She looked at me, shrugged her shoulders.
I went to her and asked her: “Do you want to pray?”
“Yes,” she said.
We held hands, prayed together for the humility to serve without boasting or judging and for love to be restored within us all.
“Thank you,” she said when we finished. “It changed the dynamics for
When we were done with our shift, we walked outside together. We talked about how important it is not to judge anyone or anything but to love everyone unconditionally.
With perfect synchronicity, in my prayer and meditation time this morning, I read the words of Jesus Christ in Matthew 6:44, 46:
“But I say to you, Love your enemies… for if you love only those who love you, what reward will you have?”