It's interesting to note that the word "Gospel" means "good news," not "good advice." The gospels are not so much a spiritual and moral theology book that tell us what we should be doing, but are more an account of what God has already done for us, is still doing for us, and the wonderful dignity that this bestows on us.
Of course the idea is that since we are gifted in this way our actions should reflect that dignity rather than what's less lofty and more petty inside us. Morality is not a command, it's an invitation; not a threat, but a reminder of who we truly are. We become taller and less petty when we remember what kind of family we ultimately come from.
In essence, we all have two souls, two hearts, and two minds. Inside of each of us there's a soul, heart, and mind that's petty, that's been hurt, that wants vengeance, that wants to protect itself, that's frightened of what's different, that's prone to gossip, that's racist, that perennially feels cheated. Seen in a certain light, all of us are as small in stature .
But there's also a tall, big-hearted person inside each of us, someone who wants to warmly embrace the whole world, beyond personal hurt, selfishness, race, creed, and politics.
We are always both, grand and petty. The world isn't divided up between big-hearted and small-minded people. Rather our days are divided up between those moments when we are big-hearted, generous, warm, hospitable, unafraid, wanting to embrace everyone and those moments when we are petty, selfish, over-aware of the unfairness of life, frightened, and seeking only to protect ourselves and our own safety and interests.
We are both tall and short at the same time and either of these can manifest itself from minute to minute. But, as we all know, we are most truly ourselves when what's tall in us takes over and gives back to the world what the short, petty person wrongly takes.
God prays for us as we reflect: “The Lord is good to all, and his compassion is over all that he has made.” (Psalm 145:9)
Lord, I pray for all my Sonshine Friends who are big-hearted, generous, warm and hospitable. May we embrace each moment with your love and compassion for all your people.