Well, Pope Benedict XVI went home from Britain a few days ago and I’ve noticed an interesting parallel between his visit and the life of another guy we’ve all heard of.
The run-up to the Pope’s visit was filled with harsh attacks; everything from accusing him of being a Nazi to enabling pedophiles was brought up to try to tear the guy to shreds before he even made land fall. Richard Dawkins went so far as to push to have the pope arrested upon arrival. It was simply amazing to watch as all of this rancor and general incivility was met with… love.
The pope made two things clear in his ultra-German accent. First, he wasn’t backing down on basic Christian principles and second that he simply loves people. He’s a genuinely spiritual and likable guy and doesn’t have the time or desire to defend himself or attack anyone. His only priority is to tell the truth and love.
After a brief four day visit the British media that had been trying to shout him down now can’t say enough good about the man. Anti-pope rallies were canceled due to lack of interest while hundreds of thousands made incredible effort just to catch a glimpse of him. Seems clear that love speaks more to people’s hearts than hate. Is there a lesson here?
A long time ago a man loved people a whole bunch. He loved them perfectly. People hated and even killed him for it. No, the Pope isn’t Jesus, but isn’t that an interesting parallel? Isn’t it amazing to watch all the hate poured on one man and to see it all just disappear into nothingness as the love of Christ within him simply erases it?
If you want an example of how to love perfectly; look to Christ. If you want to see a fallen, sinful man doing the best he can; Papa Benny is one dickens of a good start!