Friday, February 1, 2013

Mark 9:33-41 - Be Humble like a Child

Then He came to Capernaum. And when He was in the house He asked them, “What was it you disputed among yourselves on the road?”
But they kept silent, for on the road they had disputed among themselves who would be the greatest.
And He sat down, called the twelve, and said to them, “If anyone desires to be first, he shall be last of all and servant of all.”
Then He took a little child and set him in the midst of them. And when He had taken him in His arms, He said to them,
Whoever receives one of these little children in My name receives Me; and whoever receives Me, receives not Me but Him who sent Me.
Now John answered Him, saying, “Teacher, we saw someone who does not follow us casting out demons in Your name, and we forbade him because he does not follow us.”
But Jesus said, “Do not forbid him, for no one who works a miracle in My name can soon afterward speak evil of Me.
For he who is not against us is on our side.
For whoever gives you a cup of water to drink in My name, because you belong to Christ, assuredly, I say to you, he will by no means lose his reward.
My silly children
photo by Danny Bruce, used under the creative commons license.
check out more of his photos here:
The Disciples were embarrassed. They had been arguing among themselves which one of them would be "top dog" but each one of them in their hearts knew that to push themselves as the greatest was something that they should not be doing. Otherwise, when Jesus asked them about it, they wouldn't have remained silent.  But they knew better.

Sometimes I think I am a person of talent but, thankfully, whenever I am tempted to "push myself forward" and exalt myself over someone else, something happens to humble me.  This, I believe, is done for my salvation.  I remember one particular time when I used to think someone I worked with just wasn't as smart as me.  That person told me that Six Flags amusement park was opening up for the season on a certain day. I decided I would take my son.  When I drove the 45 minutes to the place, I found out that the park was only open to season ticket holders that day.  That Monday I told my story to the person whom I thought wasn't so smart and they laughed at me asking, "Why didn't you check the website to see what days they were open? That's what I do/"  So, who's the smart one now?

As long as God keeps sending me situations like this, and as long as I humbly accept them, then I will be kept from pride.  The Church says, in its Tradition that the child who sat on Jesus' lap as an object lesson to His disciples was none other than St. Ignatius.  He was a humble child who grew up to be a disciple of the beloved Apostle John and he ended up writing his own letters of encouragement to the Church. So when we remain humble, God can use us in great things.  May I remember to be humble today and thus gain the Kingdom. Amen.

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