Meditating on the Enemy Camp
As division and divisive language continue to escalate, I think if Jesus were to choose one of his parables for us, he would share the story of The Good Samaritan and simply change the language.
You may recall this parable found in Luke 10:25-37. A man is attacked by thieves, left to die and those of his own group pass him by (even crossing over to the other side of the street rather than helping him). But the one who stops, bandages his wounds, takes him to a place where he can be cared for and pays for his care is none other than the enemy!
Hearing Dr. Amy-Jill Levine's words around this parable opened my eyes to be on the lookout for help coming from the "enemy camp." I found examples not only in the New Testament, but the Old Testament as well. Where did help come from for infant Moses pulled from the Nile? From the very palace of the murderous king who issued the order that all male Israelite babies be thrown into the river! The rescuing of Moses and the parable of The Good Samaritan remind me that people of compassion are everywhere (as are people of violence and indifference). They are found in every religion, in every political camp. It does no earthly good to continue to demonize those who are not like us. It's a waste of valuable time to continue to ruminate on how terrible those Republicans or Democrats are (or any group we are tempted to label and disdain). And it's certainly a waste of energy to share divisive Facebook posts or tweets!
Instead, pause from posting about your enemy and join me for a moment to enter into this take on Jesus' parable. Read and then close your eyes, allowing yourself to take in the scene with all of your senses (which is to meditate on the passage):
Jesus' parables confused, confounded and disturbed its listeners. On purpose. For those courageous or curious enough to enter into them (to meditate or chew on them) they offered salvation.
Whether a change of heart, a transformed mind, more freedom, mercy or love...whatever it is you're seeking today...what if Moses' own salvation and the parable are right? What if what you're looking for may just come from the enemy camp?!?
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Kasey is a scarf, ball and club juggling spiritual director just outside of Nashville, TN. Play helps her Type-A, Enneagram 1 personality relax, creating space for poetry and other words to emerge. She also likes playing with theological ideas like perichoresis, and all the ways we're invited into this Triune dance.