Scripture Reflection. . ,
Twenty-Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time
First Reading: Ezekiel 18:25-28
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 25
Second Reading: Philippians 2:1-11
Gospel; Matthew 21:28-32
“Unfair” appears to be the cry against God according to the Prophet Ezekiel and in Matthew’s Gospel. There is something that we as humans struggle with and that is comparing ourselves with others. We either criticize the other or ourselves but either way we don’t accept ourselves as good enough or created uniquely as a child of God. Thus we often have a need to be better than. And it is painful to our ego when someone else is recognized or gets more than we think they deserve or have earned.
The Letter to the Philippians is inserted here in stark contrast:”. . . humbly regard others as more important than yourselves, each looking out not for [your] own interests, but also for those of others.” Then we are given the example of Jesus “Who though he was in the form of God . . . emptied himself . . . humbled himself . . .”
Today is also the Feast of St. Therese of Lisieux, the Little Flower, who, although she lived a quiet hidden life as a Carmelite Nun, learned humility living among others in community. She taught us the little way – doing the little things with great love; showing love for others in simple ways – especially those it’s difficult to love.
In Our Lives as Sisters of The Redeemer . . .
As a religious community of individuals drawn together by the love of God we are certainly called as the Letter to the Philippians puts it, to be “of the same mind, with the same love, united in heart, thinking one thing.” This is only possible if we keep our hearts open to the love God has for each of us. The simple little ways we seek to live this is through daily personal and communal prayer and our service with and for others. It is through our relationship with God, each other and others that we can truly see how we are all beloved children of God. There is no need to compare, compete, or be better than.
In Your Life . . .
Today’s Readings offer a “little way” to grow in self-knowledge. As you become more aware of your thoughts, feelings and actions you actually become more aware of God – as long as you can refrain from judging or criticizing yourself.
As you go through this week you might ask God to help you notice times when are apt to judge, criticize, dismiss another (or yourself). Then ask God to help you see as God sees the other person (or yourself). Here in the soil of God’s love and mercy the seed of humility can begin to take root and grow.
Blessings on your week!