Sunday, September 4, 2016

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Sirach 3: 17-18, 20, 28-29

My child, conduct your affairs with humility,
and you will be loved more than a giver of gifts.
Humble yourself the more, the greater you are,
and you will find favor with God.
What is too sublime for you, seek not,
into things beyond your strength search not.
The mind of a sage appreciates proverbs,
and an attentive ear is the joy of the wise.
Water quenches a flaming fire,
and alms atone for sins.

Humility is not thinking less of yourself. Humility is thinking of yourself less. The man who boasts of his own achievements receives the glory he creates for himself. God created the sun, man the light bulb. The light created by man can never be as bright as the light created by God. Nor can it last as long. The same is true about glory. If you give yourself glory it will be short lived. Glory given by God is eternal.

When I was in boot camp I was told that the goal was to get through the eight weeks and not have the drill instructor know my name. There are only two reasons a drill instructor learns your name. You have either excelled or you have failed. People who excel are given additional responsibilities.  People who fail are given extra practice to get it right. Both can be a curse to the aspiring sailor. Strive instead to do everything right but do it without anyone noticing. That is the key to success in boot camp.

This is how we are called to live our lives in this passage. We are to do everything we do the best we possibly can without calling attention to ourselves. We are not called to stand up in the crowd and scream, “Look at me!” The Father sees all that we do and how we do it. If we do even the most mundane and small thing for the sole glory of God we do such things in a grand way. Saint Theresa of Calcutta used to say that small things done with love are great things.

Seek not the limelight, the accolade, the praise and honor, or the admiration of your peers. If you do what you do without the expectation of credit you will please God in all that you do.

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