Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Reflection: Mark 9:30-37

Tuesday of the Seventh Week in Ordinary Time - Mark 9:30-37

Jesus and his disciples were traveling through Galilee.  He was teaching his disciples and he said to them: “The Son of Man will be handed over and will be killed.  Three days after his death the Son of Man will rise.”  His disciples did not understand what Jesus was saying to them.  Would what he foretold really come true?  How could that be?  Jesus was a great teacher and rabbi and they hesitated to question him about this.

They arrived in Capernaum and when they were settled in the house where they were staying, Jesus asked His disciples: “What were you arguing about during our journey?”  The disciples were silent and embarrassed.  The topic of their conversation had been “who was the greatest disciple.”  Most likely, they knew that Jesus would not approve of their conversation.

Jesus said to his disciples: “Whoever wishes to be first shall be the last of all and the servant of all.” Jesus then called a little child over to him and said to the disciples: “Whoever receives one child in my name, receives me; whoever receives me, receives the One who sent me.”

Power and renown!  In our world, this is what many people long for and strive for! Think of all the movie stars, rock singers, models, and political candidates who vie for publicity, power, and fame.  Do they actually believe that these will bring them true happiness or are they simply caught up in the world’s values?  Jesus wants us to find our happiness and security in Him, not in fame or fortune.

Naturally, we all want others think well of us.  In and of itself, this is not bad.  However, we get into trouble when we are driven to look good or to achieve so that we gain status, honor, or esteem.  We believe that people will approve of us and of what we have accomplished.

Today I invite you to take some time and ask yourself: How important is power and admiration to me? Do I hope other people admire me? Or am I content to live my life as well as I can and not need approval from others.

There is no guile in young children. They simply are who they are. They trust. They love. They enjoy life. And yet we adults often consider them immature. And in many ways they are. Yet, they can be a great example to us of what truly is important in life. Today observe a child. Imitate a child. You may have a wonderful day!

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