I have been blessed over the past couple of years to teach a class on social justice to high school seniors. It has been a great opportunity to both examine the world with a critical eye as the teacher, as well as expand the world-view of my students. What I have found in my time as a teacher is that the majority of people know very little about the world around them. That, we are quite happy to be oblivious to the plight of suffering. And, it’s not that we want to be ignorant, but that once we are aware of the suffering of others we cannot be blind it. We are, then, obligated to do something.
This whole Christianity thing is one that seems easy: love people, be nice, share your things. But in reality, it calls us to so much more! Psalm 72 tells us that once God comes, God’s justice will be more than a nice idea. It is telling us that God’s justice will flourish, that it will be lived out with reckless abandon! And, here we are: a people who witness the coming of Christ at every celebration of the Mass. We preach a profound justice, one that professes the sacredness of life in all forms. This Psalm gives us the ideal for which we are striving.
In this season of Advent, we are given a reminder of what is like to wait for the coming of the Messiah; of what it would have been like to long for the fulfillment of God’s promise. In that let us take this time to reflect on God’s promises of justice, things that we can do to help to bring about the Kingdom to those around us.
How do I treat those in positions subordinate to me?
How have I defended or supported the poor in my life?
What have I done to encourage peace in my relationships?