June 19, 2016 — Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Our Gospel Reading for today finishes with the Lord telling us, “For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will save it.” That may sound somewhat foreboding to us as we strive to follow Him and to be His disciple.
We need to see that from another perspective, however. Jesus was fond of teaching by using references to plants and planting. On multiple occasions he cites seeds in His teachings. If we consider it, we bury a seed; in effect it dies. Nevertheless, it must die for it to fulfill what it was intended to be. It cannot produce fruit, become a tree unless it goes through the process of dying to what it once was.
That is Jesus’ message for us. If we truly wish to follow Him, we must die to what we once may have been, or in some cases to what we may think we want to be. We have to learn to look at ourselves as the Lord might look at us. The ongoing question is “What does the Lord want me to be?” or “How does the Lord want me to serve Him and others?”
It is not easy to serve the Lord. It is not comfortable to always think of others first. Yet, those are Jesus’ instructions to us. That is His call to us. As He reminded us many times, “I came to serve, not to be served.” That needs to be our goal as well. That is what stewardship is all about.