Saturday, August 27, 2011

Strength, Steadfastness and Humility

Tuesday, August 09, 2011
Deuteronomy 31:1-8, Matthew 18:1-5, 10, 12-14 (Strength, Steadfastness and Humility)

Today I am intrigued by the contrast between the first and second reading at Holy Mass.  The first is from the Book of Deuteronomy, where Moses commissions Joshua to lead the children of Israel into the Promised Land.  He exhorts him to be “strong and steadfast”.  The Gospel has Jesus answering the question of the disciples about who was the greatest in the kingdom of God by placing a child in their midst.  “Whoever humbles himself like this little child is the greatest”.  How should we reconcile the injunction to be strong and steadfast with the quality of a child?  The key is humility.  Without this essential virtue, strength becomes arrogance and steadfastness degenerates into stubborn willfulness.  Humility does not mean being a doormat, but is about being comfortable with the truth of who we are and who God is.  St. Paul says that with God we can do all things.  And Jesus says that without Him we can do nothing.  Back to St. Paul, “If God is with us, who can be against us?”  So let us receive all our strength from our love-relationship with the Lord and so be able to face every adversity with courage and faith

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