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I AM SUPERIOR THAN YOU!

Saturday of the Thirtieth week in Ordinary Time

Scriptural Readings: Philippians 1:18b-26; Ps. 42:2, 3, 5cdef; Luke 14:1, 7-11


My dear encountered couples:

“Dangers, dangers everywhere!” You’ve heard that before. One of the dangers is allowing ourselves to feel superior to others. Have you ever felt superior to anyone? I’ll bet we all have.


In today’s gospel, Jesus saw that people were scrambling to sit in the places of honor at a dinner he was attending. Why were they doing that? So, they would look more important to those who were not sitting in those places of honor. The closer to the host, to the celebrity, to the guest of honor, the more important they would appear to those farther away. That would make them feel superior.


Ever sit in the first row at a play or a concert? Did that make you feel superior to the people behind you? Especially to those who had to stand way back in the back? Would you like to ride in a limousine with dark windows? Would that make you seem superior to the guy in the rent-a-wreck? Do you not only try to keep up with the Joneses but try to stay ahead of them - a bigger house, bigger pool, bigger car? Why? Does that make you superior?


A political appointee in Washington was once quoted as referring to all of us as “peasants.” Seems he felt superior because of his influential position. I guess he forgot that we “peasants” are the ones who pay his salary. The rich feel superior to the poor, the powerful superior to the powerless, the beautiful to the not so pretty. Little children feel superior to their pet hamsters. Suppose the bag lady with the shiny grocery cart feels superior to the woman with the rusty one? Why do we strive after superiority?


“Everyone who exalts himself shall be humbled,” Jesus said, “and he who humbles himself shall be exalted.” What do you suppose he meant by that? Well, Jesus encourages us to be content with what seemingly is “lowly and least.” Often it is in the small and seemingly insignificant gifts of everyday life where we may experience the greatest love, joy and peace. Today be mindful and notice the many small gifts you receive. Thank the giver and thank God!

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