by Jose Kurian Puliyeril
9th Sunday after the Pentecost
Gospel Reading: St. Luke 14: 7-11
In today's reading our Lord introduces a parable to us, to emphasize that humility is to be followed in our daily lives. Our Lord explains the greatness of humility through the parable. The people of those days as well the current era give prime importance for the costly dress and ornaments during the festive seasons and they wear them as much as they could during the occasions of weddings etc. Such people will be longing to have recognition from others for their costly dresses and ornaments. So naturally they would prefer to have prominent places so that others would make note of their appearance and other sets up.
People of these days forget about the power which might exalt them and try to occupy the position of the supernatural power to obtain the recognition and popularity by hook or crook. A wrong understanding that money could buy positions and recognitions have been deep rooted among us. And such a false and undesirable attitude guides in all walks of our lives.
King Solomon the wise tells that the fear of the Lord is the instruction of wisdom and before honor is the humility. (Proverbs 18:33) Again King Solomon tells in Proverbs "Before destruction the heart of the man is haughty, and before honor is humility." Let us think how far we do justice to the above verses everyday. Do we keep the fear of the Lord before our words, deeds and thoughts everyday? Do we give heed to the instructions of the Holy Spirit in us before our thoughts, deeds and words? In our daily lives, are we not hurting the feelings of others in a way or other, though our words and deeds? If we have fear of the Lord, do we like to go ahead as we like? Even for the religious matters we are selfish and we are doing what we like. If we could wait for a second to listen to the Holy Spirit in us, we could avoid a great fall into the deep pitch. Let our minds be trained to believe that we all are the very edge of deep pitches and hence we must use our words and deeds wisely in consultation with the Holy Spirit. When we come together for the matters concerned with our Church, we think about the future as we like. No one cares the will of God and ignores the guidance of the Holy Spirit. In fact we all are at the very edge of destruction. So let us turn back and follow humility.
In Job 22:29 we read, "When men are cast down, then you shall say, there is lifting up, and he shall save the humble person". Kindly read, Psalms18:27, Proverbs 29:23, St. James 4:6. We all know that St. Mary, the blessed mother of our Lord is the only human who is honored as an ideal person to have humility. When St. Mary had the annunciation from the Angel Gabriel, she said "Behold the handmaid of the Lord: Be it unto me according to your word" (It is believed that the literal meaning of the name Gabriel is the power of God)
St. Mary admitted that she was a handmaid of the Lord. But we often forget the truth that we are children of God. St. Mary submitted herself for the entire disposal of God Almighty, ignoring the consequences that might come up against her. God expects a 100 percent submission from each and every one of us. St. Mary longed for God's will but usually our prime importance is for selfish motives and gains. While St. Mary uttered "be it unto me according to your word". The modern man is expecting the calculation of the profits. 'at gain I could have' is the motto of each and every one.
We all must ignore the selfish desires, motives and intentions. We must surrender ourselves to God Almighty and long for His will and desire. We must long for the welfare and well being of our brethren rather than taking care of selfish desires. Unless we would live for others and sacrifice ourselves for others' good, we would not inherit heaven.
May God enable us to lead a virtuous life of humility and love.
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