Daily Reflection
From a Creighton Student's Perspective

November 10th , 2007

Allison Showalter

Sophomore, Undecided Major

Rom 16:3-9, 16, 22-27
Ps 145:2-3, 4-5, 10-11
Lk 16:9-15

“You justify yourselves in the sight of others, but God knows your hearts; for what is of human esteem is an abomination in the sight of God.”

Jesus’ closing remark from the Gospel of Luke today strikes me as exceptionally troubling. Like the Pharisees, I know I am guilty of judging myself according to the standards of others around me. Many times, when I turn in a paper or complete a test, my focus is whether I will receive a good grade, not whether I actually learned the material. I do not often stop to consider whether my work represents my best effort or simply the bare minimum required to get my desired grade. Though sometimes my effort is of high quality for certain classes, I realize that most of the time I only meet expectations, nothing above or beyond to really aid my learning unless I truly have a desire to learn more about the subject.

My minimalist attitude carries over into other aspects of my life as well. When I find myself shorter on time for the day than I expect, it is usually activities like prayer time, service, and talking to my family that I eliminate from my daily schedule, not the activities that are actually expendable or time adjustable. This Gospel passage troubles me because I know my standards for everything: school, grades, morals, actions, etc. are usually based on societal norms. While I know my current behavior is acceptable by human principles, I fear it is not meeting God’s expectations.

Another striking statement of this Gospel reading is Jesus’ message that “You cannot serve God and mammon.” Jesus emphasizes the impossibility of living a life devoted to the wealth of the world while still serving the kingdom of God. This complexity is something I have put a lot of thought into lately while trying to narrow my career path and choose a major. I cannot seem to settle on just one area to focus my studies. While I have tried to discern God’s plan for my life so that I can best serve Him in my daily work, I have failed miserably. A career in a field with general financial security such as architecture intrigues me, however, I cannot discern whether it is truly God’s call for me, or simply my human fallibility causing me to desire a career that would be more financially rewarding.

This statement also brings to mind all the contrary “gods” I serve more highly than God on a daily basis. My schedule, class work, and sports are three examples from my life that quickly come to mind. While my current attitude toward these activities places them higher than God, meaning I cannot serve both the distraction and God, this is a situation that can be changed. Many times, I keep God away from my daily life and activities. In order to make God my highest master in life, I must find a way to incorporate God into my daily attitude towards my life. This may be as simple as remembering to thank God for blessing me with the gift of education and a healthy mind and body when I exercise them through homework and sports.

Only through bringing God into my daily thoughts and attitude on life can I make Him my ultimate master and make my heart what God desires. In this manner, what I hold of high esteem will not be the human justification that God finds despicable.

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