October 21, 2018 — Twenty-ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time
IS 53:10-1; PS 33: 3-5, 18-19, 20, 22; HEB 4:14-16; MK 10:35-45 or MK 10: 42-45
Our readings today are wonderfully consoling and wildly challenging. If we take them to heart, they just might change our lives. For they should call us to profound gratitude for all that God has done for us and inspire us to live lives of thanksgiving and obedience to Him in response to His overwhelming love and mercy.
In the Gospel Reading, from Mark, Jesus tells us in His own words how we can thank Him and how our lives can reflect greatness in His eyes — we can imitate Him. He tells us, “Whoever wishes to be great among you will be your servant; whoever wishes to be first among you will be the slave of all. For the Son of Man did not come to be served but to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
Our God has ransomed our lives. In truth, this “ransom” means our lives are not our own but belong to God. We must do what He asks us to do with them. And He has told us clearly what to do — serve others in love as we have been served in love by Him.
This is why service for the Christian Steward is not an add-on to our already busy lives. It is our life.
Over the course of the next week, take these readings to heart. Reflect on the remarkable love God has shown for you. Then look carefully at your daily life. Is it an imitation of the servant-love of your Brother and Savior? What changes do you need to make, perhaps just in attitude, or perhaps to the trajectory of your life as a whole, to live in grateful service to the One who loves you so?