Posts Tagged ‘humility in faith’


Do we know about Jesus or do we know Jesus? For to know all about someone is vastly different from having a deep personal relationship with him or her. To know their likes and dislikes, to share in their joys and in their sorrows. To be present in good times and in bad. To offer up the best of ourselves for the good of the other. This is the sort of loving, intimate relationship our Lord Jesus desires to have with us. And so we should fear and love Him with all our heart. Fear not as in being afraid of but rather of offending Him, of losing our relationship with Him through our unfaithfulness.

How then will our own prayer to the Lord our God be? One that comes from a superficial relationship of trying to impress Him by our religiousness? False piety?
Or will our prayer be that from the heart of having a deep personal relationship with our Lord and saviour Jesus Christ. Of knowing that we are deeply and uniquely loved even in our shortcomings and imperfections. And that it is only through Christ our Lord we are perfected. And so we strive to live faithfully in His love for ourselves, our families and for the communities we serve in for His glory.

Grant my desire to deepen my relationship with You Lord, that I may grow to be more and more like You each and every day. Amen

First reading

Hosea 5:15-6:6 ·
What I want is love, not sacrifice and holocausts

The Lord says this:

They will search for me in their misery.
‘Come, let us return to the Lord.
He has torn us to pieces, but he will heal us; he has struck us down, but he will bandage our wounds; after a day or two he will bring us back to life, on the third day he will raise us and we shall live in his presence.
Let us set ourselves to know the Lord; that he will come is as certain as the dawn his judgement will rise like the light, he will come to us as showers come, like spring rains watering the earth.’

What am I to do with you, Ephraim?
What am I to do with you, Judah?
This love of yours is like a morning cloud, like the dew that quickly disappears. This is why I have torn them to pieces by the prophets, why I slaughtered them with the words from my mouth, since what I want is love, not sacrifice; knowledge of God, not holocausts.

Gospel

Luke 18:9-14
The tax collector, not the Pharisee, went home justified.

Jesus spoke the following parable to some people who prided themselves on being virtuous and despised everyone else: ‘Two men went up to the Temple to pray, one a Pharisee, the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood there and said this prayer to himself, “I thank you, God, that I am not grasping, unjust, adulterous like the rest of mankind, and particularly that I am not like this tax collector here. I fast twice a week; I pay tithes on all I get.” The tax collector stood some distance away, not daring even to raise his eyes to heaven; but he beat his breast and said, “God, be merciful to me, a sinner.” This man, I tell you, went home again at rights with God; the other did not. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the man who humbles himself will be exalted.’


What good is it to be loved and respected if we allow pride, self importance our self regard of knowledge, wisdom and experience; to blind us to the ways and Will of God? Being Catholic in name does not bring us any closer to salvation if we do not humble ourselves before our Lord and saviour Jesus Christ, carry our cross and follow Him. Are we then surprised when our ‘faithfulness’ does nothing to enrich the lives of our family, community and all those around us? Shall we continue to live jaded superficial lives?

This morning at about 5:55am I saw an old man standing in a crowded train. He looked tired and could surely use a seat. But when the person seating in front of him got up to get off at the station, he looked around first with gentle humble eyes as if to say if you don’t mind I’ll sit down unless of course you want the seat? And I’m quite sure he would have gladly given up the seat. His humility and tender way, pierced my soul! It does not matter to me which faith background he comes from, all I know is that I saw the face of Jesus in him through this little gesture.

Keep me humble sweet Jesus and bless the soul of that old man. Amen

First reading

2 Kings 5:1-15 ·
There were many lepers in Israel, but only Naaman, the Syrian, was cured

Naaman, army commander to the king of Aram, was a man who enjoyed his master’s respect and favour, since through him the Lord had granted victory to the Aramaeans. But the man was a leper.
Now on one of their raids, the Aramaeans had carried off from the land of Israel a little girl who had become a servant of Naaman’s wife. She said to her mistress, ‘If only my master would approach the prophet of Samaria. He would cure him of his leprosy.’
Naaman went and told his master. ‘This and this’ he reported ‘is what the girl from the land of Israel said.’
‘Go by all means,’ said the king of Aram ‘I will send a letter to the king of Israel.’
So Naaman left, taking with him ten talents of silver, six thousand shekels of gold and ten festal robes. He presented the letter to the king of Israel. It read: ‘With this letter, I am sending my servant Naaman to you for you to cure him of his leprosy.’ When the king of Israel read the letter, he tore his garments. ‘Am I a god to give death and life,’ he said ‘that he sends a man to me and asks me to cure him of his leprosy? Listen to this, and take note of it and see how he intends to pick a quarrel with me.’
When Elisha heard that the king of Israel had torn his garments, he sent word to the king, ‘Why did you tear your garments? Let him come to me, and he will find there is a prophet in Israel.’
So Naaman came with his team and chariot and drew up at the door of Elisha’s house. And Elisha sent him a messenger to say, ‘Go and bathe seven times in the Jordan, and your flesh will become clean once more.’
But Naaman was indignant and went off, saying, ‘Here was I thinking he would be sure to come out to me, and stand there, and call on the name of the Lord his God, and wave his hand over the spot and cure the leprous part. Surely Abana and Pharpar, the rivers of Damascus, are better than any water in Israel? Could I not bathe in them and become clean?’ And he turned round and went off in a rage.
But his servants approached him and said, ‘My father, if the prophet had asked you to do something difficult, would you not have done it? All the more reason, then, when he says to you, “Bathe, and you will become clean.”’
So he went down and immersed himself seven times in the Jordan, as Elisha had told him to do. And his flesh became clean once more like the flesh of a little child.
Returning to Elisha with his whole escort, he went in and stood before him. ‘Now I know’ he said ‘that there is no God in all the earth except in Israel.’

Gospel

Luke 4:24-30
No prophet is ever accepted in his own country

Jesus came to Nazara and spoke to the people in the synagogue: ‘I tell you solemnly, no prophet is ever accepted in his own country.
‘There were many widows in Israel, I can assure you, in Elijah’s day, when heaven remained shut for three years and six months and a great famine raged throughout the land, but Elijah was not sent to any one of these: he was sent to a widow at Zarephath, a Sidonian town. And in the prophet Elisha’s time there were many lepers in Israel, but none of these was cured, except the Syrian, Naaman.’
When they heard this everyone in the synagogue was enraged. They sprang to their feet and hustled him out of the town; and they took him up to the brow of the hill their town was built on, intending to throw him down the cliff, but he slipped through the crowd and walked away.