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Saturday, February 19, 2005
In her pleas to Shylock for her friend the condemned merchant of Venice, Shakespeare's Portia credits God with pouring out both His Grace and His Weather upon us all, good and evil, man and woman, black and yellow, red and white. We are the ones who differentiate and discriminate; God does not.
Portia pleads with Shylock to love his enemy. But she does so in disgust for Shylock, and he knows it. Earlier he describes the rejection he has experienced:
I am a Jew. Hath not a Jew eyes?
There are always reasons for revenge, and both men and countries have fallen like dominos throughout history since the Great Fall of Adam and Eve. Their son Cain killed Abel, and thus began the ravaging.
The difference between the best and worst of us seems so great from our own frowning, tight, jaundiced eyes. Reaching out to each other with clenched fists we touch little that is warm or even alive.
To God, we are all so full of ourselves, so far from how he made us, so far from Him. All of us, all of us. Jesus insists that I see first myself, and then you, through his eyes. He would have me slash away all my judgments and see the Nazis and the Jews, see the Shiites and the Kurds, see the Illini and the Hawkeyes, even the Red states and Blue states as God does - through a single lens, all created ones, all children together, all loved, all always loved.
Lord this does not happen out of my own strength. My mind and eyes are weak. I must follow you, see through your eyes. You can teach me this way of seeing.