Marvin Repinski: When the stones say ‘thank you’

Published 5:35 pm Friday, November 18, 2022

Come to him, a living stone, though rejected by mortals yet chosen and precious in God’s sight, and like living stones, let yourselves be built into a spiritual house. — The Bible — 1 Peter 2:4-5

My thoughts are about the hurt and of the actions of revenge and the suffering caused by people in acts of “getting even.”  To react with a destructive spirit when we experience the hateful and cheating behavior that is vented on us, needs a response of silence, keeping the trial to ourselves or certainly not going on the attack!

After writing 11 chapters of glorious theology about our salvation in Christ, the disciple Paul offers very practical response we are called to make.  He describes a passionate life full of enough discernment, we are to turn sharply from evil and to pursue instead ardent concern for others:

Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good; love one another with mutual affection; outdo one another in showing honor.  Do not lag in zeal, be ardent in spirit, serve the Lord.  Rejoice in hope, be patient in suffering, persevere in prayer.  Contribute to the needs of the saints; extend hospitality to strangers. — Romans 12:9-13.

It is often said that Thanksgiving is Thanks-living, and its a human project to prompt our attitudes all year long.  In the book by Arthur Compton, a scientist, I found this statement:  “The recognition of a kind of kinship with the Creator-God is for me a matter of vital importance.  The opportunity to share —- the shaping of the conditions of life is a tremendous challenge and the great responsibility that comes with freedom.”  I lift out this manner of commitment applying my words Thanks-Living!”

Dr. Compton as he shares his faith, led a life that was not always a garden of sunflower.  He also knew those who only turned the other way when he shared his convictions.  His world is our world; dark forces and sinister programs may haunt our efforts to establish truth and hope as we see it.

Again turning to the wisdom of St. Paul. we may be edified. In this context, Paul goes on to describe how we are to deal with the hostility we receive in our lives.

Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them.  Do not repay anyone evil for evil, but take thought for what is noble in the sight of all.  If it is possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.  Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave room for the wrath of God; for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.”  No, “if your enemies are hungry, feed them; if they are thirsty, give them something to drink; for by doing this, you will heap burning coals on their heads.”  Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. — Romans 12:14-17.