Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Daily - 3/10/09

Matthew 20:17-28 (Wednesday's Gospel)

17 As Jesus was going up to Jerusalem, he took the twelve (disciples) aside by themselves, and said to them on the way,

18 "Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be handed over to the chief priests and the scribes, and they will condemn him to death,

19 and hand him over to the Gentiles to be mocked and scourged and crucified, and he will be raised on the third day."

20 Then the mother of the sons of Zebedee approached him with her sons and did him homage, wishing to ask him for something.

21 He said to her, "What do you wish?" She answered him, "Command that these two sons of mine sit, one at your right and the other at your left, in your kingdom."

22 Jesus said in reply, "You do not know what you are asking. Can you drink the cup that I am going to drink?" They said to him, "We can."

23 He replied, "My cup you will indeed drink, but to sit at my right and at my left (, this) is not mine to give but is for those for whom it has been prepared by my Father."

24 When the ten heard this, they became indignant at the two brothers. 25 But Jesus summoned them and said, "You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and the great ones make their authority over them felt.

26 But it shall not be so among you. Rather, whoever wishes to be great among you shall be your servant;

27 whoever wishes to be first among you shall be your slave.

28 Just so, the Son of Man did not come to be served but to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many."

I sent this out last May about the parallel passage in Mark's gospel. In that passage, James and John (not their mother) requested the seats of honor at Christ's throne. Things have changed for me quite a bit since I wrote this -- I've quantum leaped spiritually since then. Nevertheless, the message still stands. I have a long way to go to become a humble servant.

Daily, May 28 2008
This is today’s gospel. I actually got myself out of bed and went to mass this morning and was really struck by this. It shows that the apostles were human – James and John wanted to be recognized as “the best”, and the rest of the Twelve were jealous. The teaching here is spectacular: those who wish to be great in the eyes of God need to be humble servants. A message that’s far easier to understand than to implement.

When I look deep inside and think about how much of a humble servant I really am, the answer isn’t good. I go to mass regularly, and am starting to go during the week now. I pray more now than I ever have before, and am concentrating hard on opening up my heart to God and make things as personal as I can. I’ve brought the Blessed Mother back into my life after a LONG absence. At CHRP I went to confession for the first time in 25 years, and have gone since. Things are spiritually moving in my life.

Yet we’re called to be humble servants, and quite honestly, I don’t fit that description. I have far to go.