Jesus said to his apostles:
“Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me,
and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me;
and whoever does not take up his cross
and follow after me is not worthy of me.
Whoever finds his life will lose it,
and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.
“Whoever receives you receives me,
and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me.
Whoever receives a prophet because he is a prophet
will receive a prophet’s reward,
and whoever receives a righteous man
because he is a righteous man
will receive a righteous man’s reward.
And whoever gives only a cup of cold water
to one of these little ones to drink
because the little one is a disciple—
amen, I say to you, he will surely not lose his reward.”
Praised be Jesus Christ!
The Gospel for today gives us a stark reminder to balance our priorities. There are many activities and persons in life that can occupy us: family, work, leisure, and civic duty. As important and fulfilling as these elements of our life can be, Jesus reminds us today that is our relationship with Him that must have pride of place. Cultivating our friendship with Him and accomplishing His Divine Will are our highest priorities.
When our relationships and activities are rightly ordered with Christ as our most important priority, we will grow in holiness. Further, from this right ordering, our human interactions and activities will be of a kind that promote sanctity in our lives. On the contrary, when Christ is not supreme in our lives, our relationships and activities will lead to the spiritual disorder of sin.
As we enjoy extra free time this holiday weekend, we can reflect upon our daily relationship with Jesus, which puts into perspective all other human interactions and priorities. As always, know of my prayers before the Real Presence of Our Lord in the Most Blessed Sacrament.
+ Bishop Schlert