Daily Gospel Reflection for November 3, 2014

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Today’s Gospel: Luke 14:12-14

Jesus was dining at the home of a prominent man and as usual, he used the opportunity to teach a needed lesson. Jesus tells us, that when we give a dinner party, we ought not to invite our friends, family, or neighbors. We ought to invite the poor, the maimed, the outcasts.

At face value, this is a very confusing Gospel passage. What is Jesus saying?

Maybe he is saying that when we only surround ourselves with people who will reward us and tell us how wonderful we are, what good is that? The glory is all ours and not God’s. We are to treat everyone with the same love regardless of how difficult that may be and whether or not they return our love. Our goal is God’s glory and the only reward we seek is Heaven.

Ponder:

In your relationships, do you only seek out the people who will validate you and not challenge you to grow in charity? Or do you also strive to be charitable to those who would challenge your patience and who lack gratitude?

Pray:

Lord, I am weak and do not willingly dine with those who will not return my love. Help me Lord. Give me the grace to be charitable so that I may seek only Your glory and not my own.

Copyright 2014 Terry McDermott

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2 Comments

  1. Terry, thank you for this reflection on a challenging gospel. How often do I look for validation in the eyes of others, or “give” because of what I will gain. Today’s gospel reminds me of the true desire that I need to have to truly serve others because I see the face of Christ in them. Have a beautiful day!

  2. Many of my theology friend talk about “The God of Surprises.” And certainly, Jesus in today’s Gospel comes across that way. There is certainly nothing surprising about hosting your friends and family at your home, nor in their reciprocation. But to step outside what is expected and to emulate God’s generosity and openness–well that is surprising.

    And yet, also not.

    During the Passover feast, at the start of the Seder a candle is lit and the door is opened with an invocation that all are invited. The light is lit and the door opened so that the poor, homeless, and wandering might find themselves welcomed on this special night.

    As the seder in our home is with Jews, Christians, and those of other or no faiths, we also incorporate this prayer at our invocation (which echoes very much the First Reading from today):

    Let us be united.
    Let us speak in harmony.
    Let our minds apprehend alike.
    Common be our prayer.
    Common be the end of our assembly.
    Common be our resolution.
    Common be our deliberations.
    Alike be our feeling.
    Unified be our hearts.
    Common be our intentions.
    Perfect be our unity.

    (Suggested Prayer for Palm Sunday from the Rig Veda, in Earth Prayers, 93)

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