Sunday Reflection 30Oct 2011

The greatest among you must be your servant.

Last Sunday’s Gospel is particularly relevant to life today. Jesus in no uncertain terms tells the Scribes and the Pharisees that what they were hypocrites as they do not practice what they preach and warns the people to be wary of what they preach.

This is indeed very true even today more than 2,000 years later. Everywhere we go we encounter such hypocrites; people in very esteemed and revered positions who do not practice what they preach. In fact many go against the very principles which they preach. They are great preachers but poor doers of what they preach. We see them everywhere; in our bosses, teachers, politicians, religious leaders, pious people and even parents.

They want praise and honour for themselves among men but fail to realise that real honour should be accorded by God himself for our services in accordance with His teachings. Yes we do a lot of good deeds but we do so with great pride for self glory with no humility whatsoever. We want to be popular; we want titles and want to be given importance in public.

Jesus clearly sates there is only one Father, one Master and one Teacher and that is God Himself and everything we do must be to please Him and none other. In whatever we do we must seek the recognition of that God and not any human awards. In order to do that we must humble ourselves to serve those under our care and not be subservient to the worldly masters.

As Jesus said “The greatest among you must be your servant. Anyone who raises himself up will be humbled, and anyone who humbles himself will be raised up”. We are all, to some extent guilty of what Jesus said of the scribes and Pharisee. We preach but fail to practice what we preach. We are quick to judge others but fail to judge ourselves.

After having listened to His Word last Sunday, let’s spend some moments today in solitary and sacred silence reflecting on what those words mean to us in our lives. We may be masters in our society but are we humble enough to become the servants of those under our care? Do we seek glory and fame in whatever we do? We cannot be the greatest in the eyes of God by being mere masters of others but by humbling ourselves to become the servants of them.


Below is the Gospel Reading for last Sunday

Gospel, Mt 23:1-12

Then addressing the crowds and his disciples Jesus said,

'The scribes and Pharisee the occupy the chair of Moses.

You must therefore do and observe what they tell you; but do not be guided by what they do, since they do not practise what they preach.

They tie up heavy burdens and lay them on people's shoulders, but will they lift a finger to move them? Not they!

Everything they do is done to attract attention, like wearing broader headbands and longer tassels,

like wanting to take the place of honour at banquets and the front seats in the synagogues,

being greeted respectfully in the market squares and having people call them Rabbi.

'You, however, must not allow yourselves to be called Rabbi, since you have only one Master, and you are all brothers.

You must call no one on earth your father, since you have only one Father, and he is in heaven.

Nor must you allow yourselves to be called teachers, for you have only one Teacher, the Christ.

The greatest among you must be your servant.

Anyone who raises himself up will be humbled, and anyone who humbles himself will be raised up.

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