- Reflect on this Scripture alone or in a small group.
In this week’s passages, I see an overarching theme: us, the saints, versus them, the sinners. I can think of countless times when the “us versus them” mentality dictated how I felt and behaved in a particular situation. My failed flesh and limited wisdom lead me to make groundless judgment calls about others. Unfortunately, this is not how God wants us to think, but is instead a symptom of our bondage to disobedience (aka sin). How then, should we look onward at someone we view as different than ourselves?
God looks onward at those different than Him (everyone) with love and mercy. The Canaanite woman was not to be associated with the Jews. She was not of the Chosen people of God; therefore, she was not to get the same treatment and respect as Christ’s followers. Yet, Christ, perceiving her faith, tested His disciples “us versus them” belief when He addressed her. He then did the unthinkable thing and healed “one of them.”
Race, ethnicity, social classes, and financial classes are all used to filter out the “them” of our lives and is a corrupted worldview. We see “them” as the Disciples saw the Canaanite woman: different. How often does the Canaanite woman come to us for help in our jobs? When we face a situation that puts us at odds with a member of society, do we treat them like one of us or one of them? And what if God cared for us in the same way based on our sin and shame? Just some things to think about the next time you respond to an overly emotional drunk at 2 a.m. Yeah, they are one of us, too—a sinner needing God. So please, represent Him well.
Dear Heavenly Father,
Through your plan of salvation, you have made us all disobedient in that we may all experience your grace, mercy, and love together. Strengthen our ability to see, speak, act, and understand as one. And remind us amid adverse situations with others that they are the same as us in your eyes: a child lost or found, searching for Hope that is in You. Unite us in common prayer, thanksgiving, and love. Amen.