God is reminding us today that all good things in life come from him. Today’s Readings paint the picture of a vineyard. Just as God supplies the vineyard with air, sunlight, water, soil, the wall to protect it, and the tower to guard it so he supplies each one of us with life, talents, opportunities, family, knowledge, faith, and the guidance from the Church. There is no good thing we can think of that doesn’t own
its origin and existence to God. I think one of the very best things that God gives us his mercy.
Today’s Readings show how many chances God gives his tenants to do the right thing, to fulfill their duties, to do what they were put there to do. When they don’t do what’s right, God sends three different messengers, including his own son. If we think about it he didn’t have to send anyone. He could have evicted them right away. But God is patient with them just as he is patient with us. He keeps giving us more and more chances, many more than we deserve. He never gives up on us, even though we sometimes give up on ourselves. God’s boundless mercy is the best evidence of his immense goodness.
If God shows us his boundless mercy and goodness, shouldn’t we also show mercy to others, Mercy isn’t about forgiving others because they deserve to be forgiven. Mercy is forgiving precisely when they don’t deserve it, because that is how God forgives us. During this Mass let us ask God to give us the grace to forgive, to show mercy and goodness to take the initiative in rebuilding relationships so that God’s mercy and goodness will finally get free rein in us filling us with his peace that surpasses all understanding.
In April of 1986 two men greeted each other in Tokyo’s International Airport. One man was an American the other was Japanese. The last time the two men met was over forty years ago in a cave in Okinawa. At that time the American was holding a five-year old Japanese boy who had been shot in both legs. Suddenly the Japanese soldier leaped from behind his hiding place and aimed his rifle at the American. There wasn’t anything the American could do, so he simply put the boy on the ground, took out his canteen, and began to wash the boy’s wounds. If he had to die what better way to die performing as act of mercy. The Japanese soldier watched in amazement and slowly lowered his rifle. The American did something the Japanese soldier will never forget. He took the child in his arms, bowed in gratitude to the Japanese soldier and took the boy to an American field hospital.
Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.