And so, brothers and sisters, I could not speak to you as spiritual people, but rather as people of the flesh, as infants in Christ. I fed you with milk, not solid food, for you were not ready for solid food. Even now you are still not ready, for you are still of the flesh. For as long as there is jealousy and quarreling among you, are you not of the flesh, and behaving according to human inclinations? For when one says, “I belong to Paul,” and another, “I belong to Apollos,” are you not merely human?
What then is Apollos? What is Paul? Servants through whom you came to believe, as the Lord assigned to each. I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth. The one who plants and the one who waters have a common purpose, and each will receive wages according to the labor of each. For we are God’s servants, working together; you are God’s field, God’s building.
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.
One thing is certain: the Corinthians had a lot going on within their community. Paul laments the jealousy and rivalry that have arisen from different “camps” of followers. 2,000 years later, can we say that the Church has improved in this regard?
I often catch myself placing fellow Christians into camps: “He is so traditional!” or “She is way too liberal!” Or I identify much too easily with one side of the aisle for whatever reason. I get so caught up worrying about what others in my camp are thinking that I risk losing touch with the fact that I am a disciple of Jesus, first and foremost.
Paul wisely asks each of us to take a step back today and ask ourselves: Who am I following? Am I truly free to detach from whatever camp I might find myself in, if it means following Jesus more closely?
—Dan Finucane teaches theology and coordinates Campus Ministry activities at St. Louis University High School in St. Louis MO.
Dear Lord, teach me to be generous, to serve you as you deserve:
To give and not to count the cost; to fight and not to heed the wounds;
To toil and not to seek for rest; to labor and not to ask for any reward,
save that of knowing that I do your will.
—St. Ignatius Loyola