September 20, 2009
Twenty-Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Jesus and his disciples left from there and began a journey through Galilee, but he did not wish anyone to know about it. He was teaching his disciples and telling them, "The Son of Man is to be handed over to men and they will kill him, and three days after his death he will rise." But they did not understand the saying, and they were afraid to question him. They came to Capernaum and, once inside the house, he began to ask them, "What were you arguing about on the way?" But they remained silent. They had been discussing among themselves on the way who was the greatest. Then he sat down, called the Twelve, and said to them, "If anyone wishes to be first, he shall be the last of all and the servant of all." Taking a child he placed it in their midst, and putting his arms around it he said to them, "Whoever receives one child such as this in my name, receives me; and whoever receives me, receives not me but the one who sent me."
Introductory Prayer: Lord, you are the author of life and the giver of all that is good. You are the Prince of Peace and my mainstay. You are my healer and the cure itself. I need you, and I need to give you. I love you and commit myself to you entirely, knowing you could never let me down or deceive me. Thank you for giving me your very self.
Petition: Lord Jesus, grant me the grace of loving trust in you, like that of a little child.
1. Who Is the Greatest?
Just like the disciples, so many times we find ourselves looking to be the greatest. Society encourages us to do whatever it takes to be successful, to be “on top.” Frequently in our struggle to succeed we lose sight of Christ and end up relegating him to second place. If I strive for it, Christ can be of greatest importance in my life. He can be number one despite my weak tendencies.
2. The Secret to Success
Our Lord gives the secret to success in today’s Gospel passage: “If anyone wishes to be first, he shall be the last of all and the servant of all.” This is often in contradiction with the ways of the world. The Gospel teaches us that we must humble ourselves like Jesus did in order to achieve true greatness. Jesus came to serve, not to be served, and the climax of this service was his death for us on Calvary.
3. Childlike Trust
Success in the spiritual life begins with our childlike trust in God. Jesus places a child before the disciples and invites them to consider that child’s relationship of trust and simplicity before his parents. In the same way, we too must become like children before God, our heavenly Father. Do I turn to Our Lord when I’m troubled and when I wish to share something good with someone?
Conversation with Christ: Lord Jesus, from now on I intend to entrust my anxieties and worries to you more readily. Help me to put all my cares in your most capable hands and trust in you as a little child. I know that you love me very much. Strengthen my confidence in you.
Resolution: I will entrust my day into God’s hands and live as a child alongside his father.
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