Scripture Reading: Luke 9:46-50

It is only normal for kids to feel insecure when a new baby is welcomed into the family. There is this feeling of fear that his parents might transfer all the tender loving care and affection to this new baby. The child gets unnecessarily paranoid and involves himself in a sort of competition with the new born baby; he tends to want the mother’s attention at the very moment when she is attending to the new baby.

The disciples in today’s Scripture reading, just like this child also exhibited this paranoia characteristic. They rebuked the man who drove out demons not because he was not doing it in Christ’s Name but because ‘he was not in their group’ (Luke 9:49). This is what we also exhibit when our friends or junior colleagues are able to do something that we alone could do in times past. We feel so insecure, with the fear of being forgotten that rather than collaborating with the person, we try to make everyone dislike the fellow.

Dear friends, let us learn to collaborate with other people and work hand-in-hand with them. It is true that we have a tendency to form “cliques”, yet, we should not form cliques with the mindset that anything that comes from outside your clique is bad. We should be welcoming to other people most especially people who are just developing skills, it does not matter if we were once champions. What should matter is that when you are gone there will be someone to do what you did best. Christ as a good example, taught His disciples all he knew. Let us then not act childishly and immaturely by being ‘unnecessarily paranoid’. We must learn to welcome and support every true work of God, thereby overcoming envy, disunity and castigating one another.

What is envy, and how can we fight against it? Envy is a sadness and annoyance at the sight of another’s wellbeing and the desire to acquire unjustly what others have. Anyone who wishes other people ill commits a serious sin. Envy decreases when we try to rejoice more and more in the accomplishments and gifts of others, when we believe in God’s benevolent providence for ourselves as well, and when we set our hearts on true wealth, which consists of the fact that we already participate in God’s life through the Holy Spirit. St. Basil the Great says, “As rust consumes iron, so envy consumes the soul that is afflicted by it”.

MASS: GREEN/RED/WHITE ST JANUARIES, BISHOP & MARTYR (OPT MEM) 1 Cor 15:35-37.42-49 Ps 56:10.11-12.13-14(R.14cd) Accl Lk 8:15 Gospel Lk 8:4-15

Prayer Point:

1.         Almighty Father, help me to secure my whole life in You and root out of me every atom of envy and jealousy towards my neighbours, that I may welcome all your works and your instrument in the Name of Jesus Christ the Lord. Amen.

Exercise: Learn to welcome, encourage and calmly correct all those who are doing exploit for the Lord.

Mediation: James 3:14-16