Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Truly I tell you, it will be hard for a rich person to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.” When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astounded and said, “Then who can be saved?”
But Jesus looked at them and said, “For mortals it is impossible, but for God all things are possible.” Then Peter said in reply, “Look, we have left everything and followed you. What then will we have?” Jesus said to them, “Truly I tell you, at the renewal of all things, when the Son of Man is seated on the throne of his glory, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.
And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or fields, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold, and will inherit eternal life.But many who are first will be last, and the last will be first.
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
There is an often-overlooked element to self-sacrifice that today’s gospel highlights: to pursue holiness, self-gift must be done for someone, and Some One. Often in prayer and in daily life, spirituality becomes a self-improvement project. Periodically relinquishing the things that provide security and control in our lives can bring personal growth, but doing it in Jesus’ name (v. 29) means that the force behind the self-gift is a kernel of hope in God’s love for his beloved (which is you and I!). When Peter asks, “what will there be for us?”, Jesus re-orients him to that hope.
Self-gift must be done in the hope of God’s promise of eternal communion. Let God’s love for you fuel a kernel of hope for a beautiful future with the One who loves you most deeply!
—Michael Lamanna, S.J., a Jesuit scholastic of the U.S. Northeast Jesuit province, just completed his philosophy studies at Loyola University Chicago.
May today there be peace within. May you trust God that you are exactly where you are meant to be. May you not forget the infinite possibilities that are born of faith. May you use those gifts that you have received, and pass on the love that has been given to you. May you be content knowing you are a child of God. Let this presence settle into your bones, and allow your soul the freedom to sing, dance, praise and love. It is there for each and every one of us.
—St. Therese of Lisieux