The bosom of Abraham, mentioned in the Gospel of Luke, represents divine justice. Like Christ who is found below this image of Abraham holding three souls, a poor man named Lazarus suffered during his life. God did not forget him. As I experience the suffering of those who struggle, may I not despair thinking God is absent.
May I resist the desire to turn away from those who suffer. May I follow Christ, acting in love and with justice.
The poor man died and was carried away by the angels to be with Abraham. (Luke 16:22 See the whole story below.
“There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and who feasted sumptuously every day. And at his gate lay a poor man named Lazarus, covered with sores, who longed to satisfy his hunger with what fell from the rich man’s table; even the dogs would come and lick his sores. The poor man died and was carried away by the angels to be with Abraham. The rich man also died and was buried. In Hades, where he was being tormented, he looked up and saw Abraham far away with Lazarus by his side. He called out, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am in agony in these flames.’ But Abraham said, ‘Child, remember that during your lifetime you received your good things, and Lazarus in like manner evil things; but now he is comforted here, and you are in agony. Besides all this, between you and us a great chasm has been fixed, so that those who might want to pass from here to you cannot do so, and no one can cross from there to us.’ He said, ‘Then, father, I beg you to send him to my father’s house— for I have five brothers—that he may warn them, so that they will not also come into this place of torment.’ Abraham replied, ‘They have Moses and the prophets; they should listen to them.’ He said, ‘No, father Abraham; but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’ He said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the prophets, neither will they be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.’” Luke 16:19 -31 (NRSV)
Invitation to Pray:
If you know the song Rock-a My Soul in the Bosom of Abraham sing it. (Lyrics: Rock my soul in the bosom of Abraham, Rock my soul in the bosom of Abraham, Rock my soul in the bosom of Abraham, Oh, rock my soul. So high, I can’t get over it. So low, I can’t get under it. So wide, I can’t get ’round it. Oh, rock my soul.) You can listen to it on YouTube.
What prayers are emerging in your body, mind, heart, and imagination? Pray them now.
Photos: The West Rose window (1215) at the Chartres Cathedral in France.
Other Posts in this Series
Stained Glass Flower: The West Rose Window at Chartres (1)
Center of All: The West Rose Window at Chartres (2)
Matthew the Gospel Writer: The West Rose Window at Chartres (3)
Mark and Luke Looking to Christ: The West Window at Chartres (4)
John the Gospel Writer: The West Window at Chartres (5)
Angels: The West Window at Chartres (6)