In today's first reading from Acts 5, we see one of numerous stories of jailbreaks in the Book of Acts. The Gospel reading today begins with perhaps the most recognized passage of Scripture, John 3:16.
Jesus' Apostles were not in the good graces of the Jewish leaders. Today we see that the High Priest and his cronies had the Apostles thrown into prison. "But during the night, the angel of the Lord opened the doors of the prison, led them out, and said, 'Go and take your place in the temple area, and tell the people everything about this life.'"
The Apostles were jailbirds. You're probably well aware that folks who have done time in prison have a stigma about them. You would probably tread very carefully around an ex-con. I suspect many looked at the Apostles in that same way. These guys were reprobates. They were also chosen to bring the message of Christ to all. Maybe a lesson for us is to be careful about judging a book by its cover, or a person just by their past.
Father, give us the grace to recognize people you send into our lives and hear your message, despite whatever baggage they may be carrying. Amen.
I listen to you every morning on my way to work. This topic really hit home this morning. I have had several immediate family members who have been arrested and served time. The forever stigma is real. I think we all make mistakes, some worse than others. We’re not supposed to judge. Who is without sin can cast the first stone, right? My favorite cousin struggled with drugs and the law. He ended up taking his own life. About 3 years later he appeared to me in a dream and thanked me for all the prayers and that he was “ok now”. That was 20 years ago so I know it was more than a dream! We should love everyone as we love ourselves, their road is difficult enough. Thanks for all you do, Gus.