Monday of the Twenty-Fourth Week in Ordinary Time
Memorial Feast: Saint John Chrysostom—Bishop and Doctor of the Church, (c.347-+407) Patron Saint of Constantinople, Education, Epilepsy, Lecturers, Orators, and Preachers
1 Timothy 2:1-8, Psalm 28:2, 7, 8-9, & Luke 7:1-10
I always enjoy today's Gospel narrative from Saint Luke because it refers to the 'other spirituality.' It is not the usual scenario of Jesus calling men and women to leave home and family to follow Him. In it, we find he mentions 'house' twice. According to scripture scholars, 'house' or 'home' is mentioned in scripture more often than 'temple' or 'church.' I find that interesting.
In the passage, the Roman Centurion, an idol worshiper and an enemy to the Jewish people, is credited by Jesus for his loyalty, concern, and care for his slave, who is ill and close to death. The Centurion does not leave his dying servant, not even go to Jesus to ask for healing for his servant. Our Lord is amazed by the Roman's faith, who recognizes that his calling is to family, which extends to his household and slave. The Centurion speaks to Jesus of his understanding of loyalty and dependability. He is a man responsible for his home.
Friends, so often, we focus on the call of Jesus to follow Him out into the wilderness. The Gospels often seem to encourage us to prepare for the suffering that may follow from discipleship. Today's Gospel offers hope, peace, and joy to those of us who are living out the daily calling of family and household responsibilities. Saint Luke reminds us that through our intimate relationships with our families, we encounter Jesus. We are not called to wander in the desert, spending extended periods in prayer and solitude as did the desert fathers. We are called to the 'other spirituality' of the family that is no more easy or more difficult, nor is it less sacred than any other form of discipleship.
Question of the Day: Will you invite Jesus into your home and ask Him to become a member of your family?
Prayer: "Blessed be the Lord, for He has heard my prayer." —Psalm 28