Twenty-Second Sunday of Ordinary Time

Twenty-Second Sunday of Ordinary Time

“When you are a guest”

In Luke’s Gospel Jesus is often depicted at meals. This week he is at the house of a powerful man, and the other guests are all conscious of their place in the pecking order. Jesus watches this and notes that God’s ways are not our ways.

Jesus, as usual, starts from where the people are. His parable illustrates the fear of being embarrassed and the desire to be honoured. But God goes beyond that, and invites those who would be looked down on in fancy circles. The preferential option for the poor is something that Pope Francis is reminding us of in his own humble way.

As you begin these reflections each day spend a few moments repeating the phrase “Speak Lord, your servant/child is listening.” Then read the short passage from Sunday’s readings until you have memorised it. Read the questions and give yourself time to deeply consider your response. Once you have reflected for a few minutes, speak to the Lord, as you would to a friend, about what you have reflected upon.

 

Sunday.

On a Sabbath day Jesus had gone for a meal to the house of one of the leading Pharisees; and they watched him closely. He then told the guests a parable, because he had noticed how they picked the places of honour. (Luke 14:1,7)

  • Have you ever felt as if people were watching you so they could catch you out on something?
  • Reflect on the fact that Jesus watches the watchers.
  • How important is being honoured to you?
  • What parable is Jesus telling you about what he notices?

 

Monday.

He said this, ‘When someone invites you to a wedding feast, do not take your seat in the place of honour. A more distinguished person than you may have been invited, and the person who invited you both may come and say, “Give up your place to this man.” And then to your embarrassment, you would have to go and take the lowest place. (Luke 14:8-9)

  • Have you ever been embarrassed like this?
  • Where do you sit in church and why there?
  • Do you think you are humble enough?
  • What advice is Jesus giving you just now?

 

Tuesday.

When you have a party, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind; that they cannot pay you back means that you are fortunate, because repayment will be made to you when the virtuous rise again. (Luke 14:13-14)

  • What do you do expecting to get back what you put in?
  • Reflect on Jesus’ preferential option for the poor?
  • What do you hope for when the ‘virtuous rise again’?
  • What is Jesus asking you to do differently?

 

Wednesday. 

What you have come to is nothing known to the senses: not a blazing fire, or a gloom turning to total darkness, or a storm; or trumpeting thunder or the great voice speaking which made everyone that heard it be that no more should be said to them. (Hebrews 12:18-19)

  • How do you picture the encounter with God?
  • How does each of your senses help you experience God?
  • When and where have you encountered God?
  • What is the Lord saying to you just now?

 

Thursday.

You have come to God himself, the supreme Judge, and been placed with spirits of the saints who have been made perfect; and to Jesus, the mediator who brings a new covenant. (Hebrews 12:24)

  • Reflect on the image of God, the supreme Judge.
  • What needs to be made perfect in you?
  • What does the image of mediator say to you?
  • Listen to him into whose presence you have come.

 

Friday

The just shall rejoice at the presence of God, they shall exult and dance for joy. O sing to the Lord, make music to his name; rejoice in the Lord, exult at his presence.  (Psalm 67:4)

  • When do you rejoice at the presence of God?
  • What makes you want to dance for joy?
  • Reflect on the call to exalt at his presence.
  • Be aware of the presence of God to you just now.

 

Saturday

My son, be gentle in carrying out your business, and you will be better loved than a lavish giver. The greater you are, the more you should behave humbly, and they you will find favour with the Lord. (Ecclesiasticus 3:17-18)

  • What value do you place on gentleness?
  • What value do you place on humility?
  • What value do you place on being loved?
  • Sit in the favour of the Lord.
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