The gospel lesson for
this week presents one of the sanest, most straightforward methods of resolving conflict between two people.
That Jesus, he knew what he was talking about. And what he was talking about was not talking but listening.
In the community of Jesus' followers, we are supposed to listen honestly to a brother or sister if they have a complaint against us. And the brother or sister with a complaint is supposed to trust that they can be heard. Because even if the one person doesn't listen, you go back with two or three others to support you. And if the one person STILL doesn't listen, you state your complaint in front of the whole community. And if the person STILL doesn't listen, that person is to become to you as a "Gentile and a tax collector."
Hmmm, who was Jesus always trying to reach out to? Gentiles and tax collectors.
So Jesus is telling us how to go about being heard, and to trust that eventually we WILL be heard. That we can be restored to right relationship with someone in the community, if we just hang in there with it.
Is All Saints that sort of community where this sort of listening and reconciliation can happen? What do you think?