Saturday, July 25, 2015

What does it mean to be great? We are called to be heroes and saints. Follow the way of the great - Daily Reflections July 25,2015

Jesus was talking about His fast approaching death as He embarked on His journey to Jerusalem, where He will confront systemic injustice, undergo arrest, imprisonment, torture and brutal execution on a cross. He needed to face this to save humanity through His suffering love. However, the disciples were too preoccupied with their aspiration for greatness. They were wondering who will be the greatest in the Kingdom of God.
       But their understanding of greatness was different from that of Jesus’. They saw greatness as how the world defines it, which is power, privilege and popularity. For Jesus, greatness is following the will of the Father even to the point of drinking the cup of suffering. For Jesus, the vision of the great is not the places of honor but life in solidarity with the outcast, the marginalized and the poor. For Jesus, greatness is all about authentic service — that is, love translated into action. Greatness is about offering one’s life so that others may live. The way of the great is the way of the cross which is the direction towards the fulfillment of His vision of peace and love.
       The heart of the great is compassion, which asks us to go where it hurts, to enter into places of pain. Compassion invites us to cry with those in misery, to mourn with those who are lonely, to weep with those in tears. The way of the great is a life in communion with the suffering humanity. There is self-emptying and humiliating movement in the life of the great. In the suffering of Jesus, God embraces the suffering world for the sake of humanity.
       This is the power of God that is different from the notion of the world. God’s power is not a power that crushes the sinner but a power that liberates him. The foolishness of the cross is the greatness of God. As we follow the way of Jesus, let His way of understanding greatness redefine our concept of greatness. Let us follow the way of a true great God — the way of the compassionate, the way of the cross that others may live. Fr. Alex Balatbat
REFLECTION QUESTION: What does it mean to be great? We are called to be heroes and saints. Follow the way of the great.
Lord Jesus, direct my heart in accordance with Your Heart, burning with love for all, especially to the least, the lost and the last. Amen.

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