TWENTY-SEVENTH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME
(Green) Cycle C/Year II (October 2, 2016)
Hb 1:2-3; 2:2-4/Tim 1:6-8, 13-14/Lk 17:5-10
We often think that we do a lot of things for the Lord: we pray, we attend the Sunday Mass, we help the Church, we do charitable activities, and we do some sacrifices for the love of God. And because of these, we demand something from God: that He may grant us our prayers, that He may save us, that He may give us good health, etc. With this kind of attitude and treatment to God, we somehow make Him equal to us and make our relationship a legalistic one: I do my obligation if You do me a favor.
We have to remember that with God we can never be in equal footing. God is God and He is our Creator. We owe Him our life and everything that we are. Our life totally depends on Him that anytime He can get back our life or lengthen it. Moreover, God is also our Savior who has given us another chance to live a life worthy of an image and likeness of God. He is also our Sanctifier and Provider who is there providing us the needed graces to make us nearer to God.
In front of God, we are nothing because we are simply His creatures. Consequently, we have no right to demand anything from Him. When Archangel Gabriel announced to Mary that she would become the mother of the Son of the Most High, she replied: “I am the handmaid of the Lord, let it be done to me according to thy words.” Like Mary, we are only servants of God. As servants or slaves, we have no right but only obligations. In the gospel for this Sunday, Jesus says: “When you have done all you have been commanded, say, ‘We are unprofitable servants; we have done what we were obliged to do’” (Lk 17:10).
When we have done our Christian duties, when we have sacrificed or done some things for the love of God, we must never claim anything from God because we have done only what we are obliged to do. There is no more demanding in front of God. What we have to do is simply to submit our will to God that way Jesus did. In the garden of Gethsemane, Jesus was praying hard and was sweating with blood. He was afraid of the crucifixion but then He said to God: “Not my will but Your will be done.” Like Jesus, we must conform our will to God and fulfill His will for us.
God has created us in His own image and likeness and He created us for Him alone so much so that St. Augustine said: “My heart is not at rest until it rests in You, my God.” The meaning and fulfillment of anyone’s life is one’s communion with God. We may acquire what we want, but if it is not in accordance with the will of God, we will never be happy. On the other hand, even if we have not achieved our ambitions, if we know that what we have done is the will of God, then there is peace and tranquility in our heart and mind.
When we simply do our obligations, we are mere unprofitable servants of God. But when we do them with love for God, then we become children of God. Total submission to the will of the master is the obligation of the servant. Wholehearted love for God manifested in the fulfillment of the divine will is the obligation of the child of God. May like Jesus and Mary we do everything for the love and glory of God.