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.’

Luke 14

Creighton University Online Ministries
Weekly Guide for Daily Prayer
Thirtieth Week of Ordinary Time: Oct. 29 - Nov. 4, 2017

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The Thirtieth Week of Ordinary Time

Justice and compassion are keys to loving, in the readings for the Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time. Exodus proclaims God's call that we act justly toward foreigners, and the most vulnerable among us: widows, orphans and the poor. Jesus says it most simply: “You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. ...You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”

On November 1st, we celebrate the Solemnity of All Saints and on November 2nd, we celebrate the Commemoration of All the Faithful Departed. A wonderful time to remember the "communion of saints" that we have on our side and the communion we will enjoy forever.

The first reading all week continues with the third week of Paul’s longest letter, the Letter to the Romans, with his teaching of the Holy Spirit in our lives.

The Gospel of Luke offers a glimpse of Jesus healing and teaching the people, even as he continues to clash with religious leaders. He cures the “bent woman” on a Sabbath and tells of the tiny mustard seed which develops to become a full grown bush. He repeats that it will not be easy to enter the Kingdom: “For behold, some are last who will be first, and some are first who will be last.” He defies those who bring word of threats on his life and defies the silent Pharisees who watch as he cures a man on the Sabbath. Jesus encourages us to be humble: “For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted.”

That line from Luke is echoed in the gospel for the Thirty-First Sunday in Ordinary Time as Jesus says in the Gospel of Matthew, “Whoever exalts himself will be humbled; but whoever humbles himself will be exalted.” He encourages us to turn away from honors and titles and to take the lowest place at the banquet.

 

Daily Prayer This Week

Please, Lord, anything but humility! Our instinctive reaction to humility might be the result of a culture that exalts riches, honors and pride. Yet all this week Jesus teaches that the way to salvation is through humility.

The first step might be simply asking for the desire to be humble. As we move through the simplest of moments in our everyday lives, we can stop and ask God to help us want to be humble. As we sit on the edge of the bed in the morning, as we head to work, sort laundry or do our errands, we can keep a running prayer in the background of our consciousness: “Lord, help me to desire the humility that will make me more aware of your saving grace.”

These same background moments offer ways for us to recognize opportunities to practice humility as we go through our days. Perhaps I can stop myself from correcting my spouse. In a disagreement, I might make an extra effort to listen to the other person’s side rather than planning my rebuttal as they speak. I can let a person in line in front of me, hold the door for someone or make an extra effort to recognize and thank those who serve me. Even these tiny gestures, when done in the spirit of Jesus’ teachings this week, offer us a special grace.

With the Solemnity of All Saints, we are reminded of all the women and men whose faithful living of the Gospel is so clear that we are sure we can imitate their lives. These are all the named saints. It would be great to name the saints whose example we desire to shape our lives. All Souls day gives us the opportunity to remember and pray for all our brothers and sisters who have died. We confidently hope and pray that they may be embraced by the love and mercy of God, poured forth in the life giving death and resurrection of Jesus. This is a wonderful day to name all those we want to pray for, and to include in our prayer those who have no one to pray for them.

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