Homily for Thursday, 4th Week of Easter

Thirty-seven years ago around this time I was sitting at a desk studying for my final examination in metaphysics (a philosophy course dealing with foundational concepts such as “essence” and “being.” An elderly priest approached me and asked what I was doing. I said, “I’m studying for my final in metaphysics.” He said, “Don’t let them confuse you. What is, is, and what is not, is not!”

I chuckled at the time, but I have never forgotten the lesson.

We hear in the Gospel today, “No slave is greater than his master.” How do we apply that to our lives?

Well, God is God, and we aren’t Him. We are his creatures; He is our Lord. It was God’s right hand that led the Hebrews out of Egypt and guided them through the desert, not human hands. It was God, not us, ¬†who saved us from our sins through the life, death and resurrection of Jesus His Son.

God is Lord, not us. We are mere creatures who share in his authority.

This is a counter-cultural message. What does the world say? It says that we are gods. It says that we define the truth, the we determine reality and what is and is not. It says that we decided who lives and who dies. The world denies God. It tries to make what is not what is. Said differently, it tries to make what is not what is.

We are messengers. God alone is the author of all that is. He alone has authority over life and death. Yes, He shares that authority with those whom he sends, but it is His authority. Both we who follow these men and women, and those with whom God shares this authority, better remember that well, lest we succumb to pride. This, too, is counter-cultural for our world today has a major authority issue. It rebels against legitimate authority.

Remember how today’s Gospel ends? “He who receives that one I send, receives me, and he who receives me, receives the One who sent me.”

We are not God, yet he calls some forth to be his messengers, sharing his divine authority. Let our hearts be open to them. Let us remember always that it is the Lord who sends us forth. We are mere creatures send forth to do his will.

About Deacon Bob

Moderator: Deacon Bob Yerhot of the Diocese of Winona-Rochester, Minnesota.
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