But in the mean time we find ourselves here and now struggling with many of the same realities that Paul and Barnabas did in the early church: human indifference, greed, jealousy, resentment, fear, doubt and division. We find ourselves living in a time that is politically and religiously hyper-divisive, where the quality of mercy seems to be greatly strained. A time where one’s own needs seem to easily take precedence over the needs of others. We live in a time where religion is routinely used to shame and marginalize those who are different or who disagree with us! And yet, Jesus tells us that there are other sheep not of “this fold” who belong to him as well …and he will bring us all together (Jn 10:16).
John’s vision shows that ultimately, through God’s love, all will be one and we will find unity in the midst of our diversity. In the middle of all of this divisiveness that we find in our country and world today, what is Jesus calling me to do? How can my voice be the voice of mercy to those most in need of hearing of God’s great mercy and love for all peoples? How will I live out my discipleship of Jesus Christ this week?