MY daily reflection and prayer: Sunday, October 18, 2015
Twenty-nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Dear my friends,
Here is the Gospel for us today according to Mark 10:35-45
James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came forward to him, and said to him, “Teacher, we want you to do for us whatever we ask of you.” And he said to them, “What do you want me to do for you?” And they said to him, “Grant us to sit, one at your right hand and one at your left, in your glory.” But Jesus said to them, “You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink, or to be baptized with the baptism with which I am baptized?”
And they said to him, “We are able.” And Jesus said to them, “The cup that I drink you will drink; and with the baptism with which I am baptized, you will be baptized; but to sit at my right hand or at my left is not mine to grant, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared.” And when the ten heard it, they began to be indignant at James and John.
And Jesus called them to him and said to them, “You know that those who are supposed to rule over the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great men exercise authority over them. But it shall not be so among you; but whoever would be great among you must be your servant, and whoever would be first among you must be slave of all. For the Son of man also came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
This is the Gospel of the Lord.
Praise to you Lord Jesus Christ.
In our social life, nobody wants to be last or least. In fact, the desire for greatness seems to be inbred in all of us.
The Gospel today tells us that Jesus teaches us the unthinkable. If we want to be first and great, then we must place ourselves at the disposal of others by putting their interests first. We have to take also on their cares and concerns as if they were our own.
Jesus combines authority with unconditional love and service with total sacrifice, the willing sacrifice of one’s life for the sake of another. Authority without sacrificial love is nothing. It’s self-serving only.
How can we service with total sacrifice? The Gospel today explains what kind of sacrifice Jesus has in mind. We must drink his cup if we expect to reign with him in his kingdom.
What kind of cup does we must drink? It entails physical suffering and the painful struggle of martyrdom. It is a bitter one involving crucifixion. We must lay down our lives even to the point of shedding our blood for the sake of Christ and others.
What does it mean? Jesus has offered his life for our sake. He also calls us to freely offer our lives in a daily sacrifice of love and service for others. It is a joy rather than a burden because it is love which has power to transform and change our lives and the lives of those around us.
Love is a sacrifice. If God’s love transforms our lives, then no sacrifice will be too great or hard to make.
In the Perpetual Adoration of the Eucharist we learn to share in God’s power, authority, and kingdom by loving others as he has loved us. There we are laying down our lives in humble caring service for the sake of our neighbor’s welfare.
Let’s pray: Lord Jesus Christ, may we be ready to lay down our lives and to serve others as you has done. May we be servants of love and compassion for others. May we drink your cup by giving generously and serving joyfully now and forever. Amen.
Photo credit: Ilustrasi (ist)