October 1, 2017
by Julie Kalkowski
Creighton University's Psychology Department
click here for photo and information about the writer

Twenty-sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 136

Ezekiel 18:25-28
Psalm 25:4-5, 8-9, 10, 14
Philippians 2:1-11
Matthew 21:28-32

Praying Ordinary Time

“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, what are you doing for others?”
Martin Luther King, Jr.

Today’s readings all seem to be centered on actions…about the choices we make….about which path we decide to follow.  I love the opening line of the first reading:  “The Lord’s way is not fair.”  Often in my much younger days, one of my six siblings and I would lament about how much easier our lives would be if our parents had not raised us to be “fair”.  And not only about acting fairly, but needing to do something when confronted with situations that were unfairly hurting others.

“Why couldn’t we be like so many others, skating away from unfair circumstances or not being able to see the unfairness in the first place?”  we would whine to each other.   Our lives would be so much more comfortable and much easier if only we could not see.  But then I would return to a saying that I always loved that goes along the lines that “Christ came to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable.”   Was it Christ who afflicted the older brother in the gospel today so that, in the end, he went out and did what his father requested?

The other concept that tugged at me about today’s reading was glory.  I have a friend who has a difficult personality.  However, my friend spends her time quietly doing things for others that help them cope or get past a bad patch in their lives.  She consistently manifests the glory of God inside her.  Her family members, friends and community are significantly better off because of her kind, thoughtful actions.

Each of us is called to a different path so that God’s glory can be revealed here on earth. I think that if each us let the unique glory of God that is within us shine forth, we could create the kingdom of God here on earth.  So, don’t be shy.  Too many people today need to see some of God’s glory and feel God’s goodness so they can have the hope and strength they need to carry on. So, I am going to stop whining, roll up my sleeves and get to work.  And while I am not always grateful for this perspective…thanks anyway, Mom, thanks anyway, Dad. 

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