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2 March 2015

Read today’s Gospel Reading: Luke 6.36-38

In making plans, whether in business or in public service, you can’t get away in times of austerity without ensuring that the intended outcomes are measurable. Qualitative and, most of all, quantitative analysis is required. As far as justifying ongoing investment is concerned, there is no doubt, the proverb holds true: ‘ The measure you give will be the measure you get back.’

But Jesus’ use of this proverb – a text made famous in the English language by Shakespeare’s play ‘Measure for Measure’, is to encourage the exact opposite of a penny-pinching attitude. When it comes to forgiving people who have hurt or wronged us, we are to reflect the limitless kindness and generosity of God. We are to forgive generously, just as we have been forgiven. A ‘good measure’ is ‘pressed down, shaken together, and running over’ – like God in Jesus we are to squeeze as much mercy into our words and actions as possible – and a little bit more.

What a privilege we have, in representing Jesus like this! What a difference it makes to a family, to a team, to a community, when people actually live in this way! Christ-like  –  being merciful.

 

Today’s Gospel Reading: Luke 6.36-38

Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.

‘Do not judge, and you will not be judged; do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven; give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap; for the measure you give will be the measure you get back.’