Then the wolf shall be a guest of the lamb,Isaiah 11:6a
and the leopard shall lie down with the young goat.
Kingdom of Shalom
Isaiah’s vision of universal peace and harmony among the beasts points to a kingdom not of this world. In the lives of some of the saints, a vision of paradise can be glimpsed through their friendship with animals. Though fact and legend may be mixed up in many of the ancient stories, they all illustrate the truth of God’s universal kingdom of peace (shalom).
Stories of the Saints
Most famously, St. Francis of Assisi tamed the wolf of Gubbio, receiving its paw in his hand as a pledge of peace. In the Golden Legend, a medieval hagiography, a wounded lion approached St. Jerome as he was lecturing in his monastery. After the saint removed a thorn from its paw, it lived gratefully with the brethren thereafter. St. Martin de Porres called a meeting of mice in the garden, promising them daily provisions if they would stay outside. In the Eastern Orthodox Church, St. Seraphim of Sarov and St. Sergius of Radonezh befriended bears in the forest. In all of these stories, sanctity restores the original peace and harmony of the Garden of Eden.
I will make a covenant for them on that day,Hosea 2:20(18), NABRE
with the wild animals,
With the birds of the air,
and with the things that crawl on the ground.
Bow and sword and warfare
I will destroy from the land,
and I will give them rest in safety.
2 Replies to “The Root of Jesse, Day 5”
Dear GMC, Thank you for your reflection which invites us to live in peace and harmony, and with equity. May our example and endeavours help to promote the blessings of Christ and His kingdom of peace.
Wild beasts of greed, hatred, and power
Cause greater destruction than we realize.
Before the Lord of creation we will cower,
Penitents we are on the holy highway.
May we carry each other as the need
when knees are weak or bodies feeble.
Each helping hand or cup of water.
Given with Christ love is a good deed.