Everyday I get an email from St. Monica's Parish in Indianapolis with a reflection on that day's reading. I really like the one I received today because it reminds us to not dwell on another's weakness but to find their strengths and what they can share with us using those strengths. It is so easy to recognize weakness - let's look harder.
Our reflection on Thursday’s Readings:
You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church (Mathew 16:18)
When reading scripture or hearing the readings when I attend Mass, I am fascinated by the life of Peter and would love to know more about him. He seemed so human to me as he seemed to constantly “miss the point”. He seemed to be a very reactive person instead of thinking before he acts. What is more astonishing is that Jesus sees something different in Peter. He says to Peter, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church (Mathew 16:18).
So even through Peter’s betrayal of Jesus or acting in ways that was opposite to the teachings of Jesus, Jesus still embraces him as the foundation of the Church! Jesus must have seen other qualities in Peter that he loved and trusted that even through such weakness his strengths prevailed.
I think this is what Jesus sees in Peter. He teaches us today that if His teachings are to come alive that we need to focus on strengths within one another versus the weaknesses that burden them. What a beautiful gift Jesus shares with us today and an incredible gift we can give to others. How many times a day do we spend frustrated that others in our lives did not fulfill our expectations or have disappointed us because we focused on their weaknesses versus the strengths they have to offer us. I believe Jesus recognized the weaknesses in Peter and was quite direct with Peter when he “missed the point”. He did not ignore this side of Peter but He did not hold on to the weaknesses of Peter and judged him every time he did or said something. It seemed that Jesus addressed his weakness when it was appropriate and then moved on with only seeing the strengths of Peter. Peter is a great example for us as we too struggle to find the gifts people have to share with us. ---Margarita Solis Deal