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Tuesday, November 12, 2013

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St. Josaphat

Wisdom 2:23—3:9
Psalm 34:2-3, 16-19
Luke 17:7-10

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in the service

"When you have done all you have been commanded to do, say, 'We are useless servants. We have done no more than our duty.' " —Luke 17:10

Jesus teaches that after serving God, we should not look for any reward or thanks from Him. Instead, we should humble ourselves and recall that we are only carrying out His orders (Lk 17:9-10). It's human nature to read this parable and think: "Is this all the thanks I get for serving You, God?" Jesus teaches that a better response is the one given in tomorrow's Gospel. A healed leper falls at the feet of Jesus, gives glory to God, and thanks Jesus (Lk 17:15-16, 18).

Once again, the Gospel challenges us to focus on what Jesus gets out of our service, not what we get out of it. We expect to get thanks from Jesus; instead, we should be giving thanks to Jesus. This was Jesus' own mindset on serving. Although He was God, Jesus did not "come to be served but to serve" (Mk 10:45).

Therefore, "let us give thanks to the Lord our God" and thank Him for counting us worthy to stand in His presence and serve Him. Focus on serving as Jesus served, and not on being noticed or thanked. God will "honor" our humble service in His way and time (Jn 12:26), which will far surpass anything we can imagine (see Eph 3:20; Heb 6:10).

Prayer:  Father, as the hymn says: "Knowing that I love and serve You is enough reward."

Promise:  "Those who trust in Him shall understand truth." —Wis 3:9

Praise:  St. Josaphat was misrepresented by both the East and the West when trying to reconcile the two factions. As a result, he was a victim of a murder plot. Yet, despite being aware of the danger, he was willing to die to gather God's people together (see Jn 11:51-52).

Reference:  (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, May 22, 2013

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