Tuesday, November 12, 2013

“I slept and dreamt that life was joy. I awoke and saw that life was service. I acted and behold, service was joy.”

“The Simple Path: Silence is Prayer - Prayer is Faith - Faith is Love - Love is Service - The Fruit of Service is Peace” ― Mother Teresa

Gospel Text: (LK 17:7-10)
Jesus said to the Apostles:
“Who among you would say to your servant
who has just come in from plowing or tending sheep in the field,
‘Come here immediately and take your place at table’?
Would he not rather say to him,
‘Prepare something for me to eat.
Put on your apron and wait on me while I eat and drink.
You may eat and drink when I am finished’?
Is he grateful to that servant because he did what was commanded?
So should it be with you.
When you have done all you have been commanded, say,
‘We are unprofitable servants;
we have done what we were obliged to do.’”

Imagine that you’re in the military, and you are assigned to guard a top-secret government facility. You need to be alert, ready to defend your post at all costs, even at the cost of your life. Now imagine that while you are on duty, the facility is attacked. You repel the attackers, but you are shot in the battle. You survive, and you are awarded a medal for your bravery in a grand ceremony.

Rather than reveling in the accolades and seeking more attention, most soldiers in this situation would simply say, “I was just doing my duty,” and then move on to their next assignment.

Like those loyal soldiers, we are called to serve the Lord and not expect anything in return. We are called simply to fulfill our duty with loyalty, love, and honor.

As heroic examples of this calling, we can think of people like Pope John Paul II, Mother Teresa of Calcutta, and countless other saints and martyrs. Each in his or her own way served the Lord without expecting any reward. They loved people. They cared for the poor and marginalized. They preached the gospel. They dedicated all their time and energy to the Lord. And they did it all simply because this is what a follower of Christ does. They never considered themselves off duty.

Why would people commit themselves to such a demanding life? Because of Jesus! Just as a soldier is committed to his or her calling out of love of country and out of gratitude for the motherland, so these heroes committed themselves to the Lord because of all he had done for them. As St. Paul once wrote, “The love of Christ impels us, once we have come to the conviction that one died for all … so that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised” (2 Corinthians 5:14-15).

You too are a soldier of the Lord. Redeemed by his blood and indwelt by his Spirit, you are a new creation. How will you serve your Master today?

Pope Francis recently exhorted two new Bishops to be “always in service” asking them to “Keep in mind that you were selected to serve, not to dominate.” This is the message the Pope has been giving over and over – and it is the message of Jesus, the one who said, “The greatest among you must be your servant.”

1 comment:

  1. I've been reading here regularly for a few weeks now. I've noticed that you don't have many posted comments and I wanted to just say that I find your writing is useful and promotes reflection. Thank you for your efforts.