Gospel Reflection Sep 1 – Msgr. Hendricks
Sunday, September 1
Twenty-second Sunday in Ordinary Time
Luke 14:1, 7-14
On a sabbath Jesus went to dine
at the home of one of the leading Pharisees,
and the people there were observing him carefully.
He told a parable to those who had been invited,
noticing how they were choosing the places of honor at the table.
“When you are invited by someone to a wedding banquet,
do not recline at table in the place of honor.
A more distinguished guest than you may have been invited by him,
and the host who invited both of you may approach you and say,
‘Give your place to this man,’
and then you would proceed with embarrassment
to take the lowest place.
Rather, when you are invited,
go and take the lowest place
so that when the host comes to you he may say,
‘My friend, move up to a higher position.’
Then you will enjoy the esteem of your companions at the table.
For every one who exalts himself will be humbled,
but the one who humbles himself will be exalted.”
Then he said to the host who invited him,
“When you hold a lunch or a dinner,
do not invite your friends or your brothers
or your relatives or your wealthy neighbors,
in case they may invite you back and you have repayment.
Rather, when you hold a banquet,
invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind;
blessed indeed will you be because of their inability to repay you.
For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.”
Jesus in the gospels always does the unexpected. He lifts the lowly, turns socially acceptable qualities upside down, he eats with sinners, is in the company of women and brings them into his teaching circle, and preaches good news to the poor.
In the gospel today, he teaches his disciples how to pray in an authentic way and calls the people who do the will of God his brothers and sisters, his family.
In the two short parables in the gospel, Jesus makes us understand our place in relation to God. We are always his creatures and God is the Creator, so we must live in such a way to make that clear to those around us. Thus, we seek to be humble and not haughty in social situations. And we do good deeds to others without expecting repayment.
To get to that point in our life and our life with God, we are offered the perfect prayer by Jesus. The prayer that Jesus himself prays to God is an outline of how to live each day. I think that is why we pray it at every Mass. We learn from Jesus how to pray and how to live.
Perhaps sometime this week we can slowly pray this wonderful prayer taught to us by Jesus himself and use it as guide for our daily living.