Matthew 25 : Question Time
When did I see you hungry, or thirsty, or in prison, or sick?
You, the Lord of light and goodness? Of beauty and wholeness?
You, Star-Maker, Ocean-Filler, Mountain-Molder?
You, Sunday School Jesus – tidy hair, trim beard, starched robe, holy hands --
Did I see you then?
Did I know you then?
You in that broken, anguished man and that wounded, bitter woman?
You in a border cage or a stinking sickbed or sprawled half-naked with a knee on your neck?
Did I ever see you?
When, Lord, when?
And then, of course, since sooner or later it’s always all about me:
Am I sheep or goat?
OK, what about You?
Are You King or Shepherd?
A scrap of song in my ear:
Il est l’Agneau et le Pasteur/ Il est le Roi, le Serviteur.
(He is the Lamb and the Shepherd/He is the King, the Servant.)
Caught by that couplet, hearing something true there,
But then, shutting it off, circling back,
I want to know, I demand to know:
What am I?
Sheep or goat?
Still the Wrong Question.
Then something, something in the ear again:
Not what but HOW?
Seeing or not? Listening or not? Loving or not?
Deciding or not?”
I live, move, and have my being
In all my brokenness and sin,
All my self-pity and fear.
But also in You.
You, the One who made us all in Your image,
In all Strength and Trust,
In all Courage and Comedy,
In all Faith, Hope and Love.
Have mercy on all of that as it lives in me, Lord,
And let me decide.
—Sr. Nuala Cotter, RA