The Way to become Holy

Luke 9: 46-50
Job 1:6-22 / Psa 17

For it is the one who is least among you all who is the greatest.
(Luke 9:48)


If serving God is our intention,
Let’s live our life for His glory;
For this must be our sole ambition:
To find the ways to be holy.

An argument started among the disciples as to which of them would be the greatest. Jesus, knowing their thoughts, took a little child and had him stand beside Him. Then He said to them, “Whoever welcomes this little child in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me welcomes the One Who sent me. For it is the one who is least among you all who is the greatest.” Then John said, “Master, we saw someone driving out demons in your name and we forbade him, because he is not one of our company.” Jesus said to him, “Do not forbid him, for whoever is not against you is for you.” (Luke 9:46-50)

Reflection

John, the brother of Andrew, who reveled in being the “beloved apostle”, and who was probably one of the “contenders in being the greatest”, thought that he could deflect the rebuke of Jesus for their lack of humility by reporting that someone who was not of their company was casting out demons, and they had tried to stop him. For that mistake, they earned another rebuke for their “professional jealousy”. Jesus wisely advised them: “Do not forbid him, for whoever is not against you is for you.”

A former secretary of Justice who is now a senator thought that she could cover up her connections to known criminals in the national penitentiary by “dropping her own bombshell” during a senate investigation. Her arrogance, bias, and total lack of remorse even in the midst of many parties testifying against her resulted in her being removed as chair of the justice committee. She should have kept her big mouth shut. Prov. 10:9 says, “He who walks honestly walks securely, but he whose ways are crooked will fare badly.” It also says, “When pride comes, disgrace comes, but with the humble is wisdom” (Prov.11:2). No wisdom in this proud woman.

St. Paul’s humility is the example we all must follow. He wrote to the Philippians: “It is true that some preach Christ out of envy and rivalry, but others out of goodwill. The latter do so in love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel. The former preach Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely . . . But what does it matter? The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached. And because of this I rejoice” (Philip.1:15-18)

God alone knows our true motives, and He desires all of us to strive like St. Paul to take the path of humility and service to achieve holiness. In one of the masses we attended, the celebrant gave an interesting homily on the subject of holiness. He said the word “holy” may well be an acronym for the virtues of humility, obedience, listening and yielding. All of these our Lord Jesus demonstrated in His short ministry as a man. No man as powerful as He was lived more humbly, (as the son of a carpenter) obeyed completely the Father’s will, listened to the needs of people, and yielded His very life for our salvation. These qualities, by the way, we also find in the little children. The reason perhaps why our Lord regarded them as the greatest.

Help us, dear Father in our journey to become like little children, striving to be humble like our Lord Jesus, obedient to all Your commands, listening to Your Word in the Bible, and yielding to the prodding of the Holy Spirit. For as our Savior advised us, we must be holy as You are holy. Amen.

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