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Make Me Humble, Lord
Tuesday of the Twentieth Week in Ordinary Time
Jesus said to his disciples: “Amen, I say to you, it will be hard for one who is rich to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I say to you, it is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for one who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.” When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astonished and said, “Who then can be saved?” Jesus looked at them and said, “For men this is impossible, but for God all things are possible.” Then Peter said to him in reply, “We have given up everything and followed you. What will there be for us?” Jesus said to them, “Amen, I say to you that you who have followed me, in the new age, when the Son of Man is seated on his throne of glory, will yourselves sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And everyone who has given up houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands for the sake of my name will receive a hundred times more, and will inherit eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and the last will be first.”
Opening Prayer: Lord Jesus, I hear your call today to be detached from everything that could separate me from you, from whatever would make it hard for me to enter the kingdom of heaven. I long to be with you, and to experience this kingdom here on earth. I want to live like one who is aware that there is only one thing in life that really matters, being with you in eternity. Help me to open my heart to your message for me today. Help me to hear your voice, and to be truly attentive to how I need to change my life.
- For God All Things Are Possible: Jesus taught his disciples that riches can make it hard for one to enter the kingdom of heaven. The disciples were dismayed. Jesus took advantage of their incredulity to underline the fundamental truth that, for God, even the hardest things, like getting a camel through the eye of a needle, are possible. Jesus wanted to reassure them. Like the disciples, we can sometimes experience the difficulty of living the Gospel and find ourselves discouraged. Let’s let Christ urge us on—when we do it with God, we can succeed!
- What Will There Be for Us? When Peter spoke up, he voiced the desires of every soul who prays! We all ask this question at some time or another. Perhaps we’re overextended apostolically, or suffering from bodily pain, or feeling emotionally drained; we obediently offer these trials to the Lord but, at the same time, we’re tempted to ask Christ this big question. We can thank St. Peter for speaking up, because Our Lord’s answer should console us deeply: “Everyone who has given up houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands for the sake of my name will receive a hundred times more, and will inherit eternal life.”
- The First Will Be Last…: Jesus wants the heart of an apostle to be the heart of a servant, focused on helping others to enter the kingdom, and then going in last after them. We sometimes try to merit first prize or to go to the head of the line, but Our Lord teaches a different lesson. As we say in the Litany of Humility, “grant me the grace that others be preferred to me in everything.”
Conversing with Christ: Lord, I want to really understand the Gospel. Protect me from being too hardheaded, proud, or attached to my own likes or possessions to please you. I want to let go of anything that would make me a less authentic disciple of yours. Today I want to ask you for the grace to forget myself and become the servant of others.
Resolution: Lord, today by your grace I will find a humble, hidden act of service to do for someone else in a way that puts me last of all.
For Further Reflection: Pray the Litany of Humility.
Father Adam Zettel, LC, was ordained in 2017 and since then has been working as a high school chaplain in Dallas, Texas. During his years of formation and as a priest, he has worked extensively with youth and offers constant pastoral care to families.