Saturday, September 27, 2014
25th Week in Ordinary Time
St. Vincent de Paul
ding: Eccl 11:9—12:8
Gospel: Luke 9:43-45
While all were amazed at everything Jesus did, he said to his disciples, “Listen and remember what I tell you now: The Son of Man will be delivered into human hands.” But the disciples didn’t understand this saying; something prevented them from grasping what he meant and they were afraid to ask him about it.
(Daily Gospel in the Assimilated Life Experience)
Earlier Peter confessed that Jesus was “the Messiah of God” (Luke 9:18-22). Although what Peter said came close to the core of Jesus’ identity, it was a dangerous one because it also captured the hidden longing of the Jews for a political king who could free them from bondage. The implications were disastrous to the raison d’être of Jesus which ruled out any political agenda. Rightly did Jesus evade this title and use instead “Son of Man”, a title derived from the Book of the Prophet Daniel.
The Book of Daniel describes the Son of Man as someone who comes in glory to judge the nations with justice but suffers terribly at the hands of people. Jesus identified himself with this image when in today’s Gospel he said: “Listen and remember what I tell you now: The Son of Man will be delivered into human hands.”Although the disciples were familiar with the Book of Daniel, “something prevented them from grasping what he meant…” (Lk. 9:45).
What was it that prevented them from grasping the meaning of what Jesus said? Blame it on their paradigm that equated suffering with defeat. Since they could not allow Jesus to end up in defeat lest they too will perish, they refused to understand the necessity of Jesus’ submission to the enemies. We cannot share this paradigm. For us suffering plays an important role in character flexing and faith building. Even psychologists have acknowledged this when they set aside Intelligence Quotient (IQ) to give way to Adversity Quotient (AQ).
The formula of AQ should be faith/adversity x 100. In plain language the formula means that faith must maintain a one to one ratio with adversity to generate a hundred percent adversity quotient. Adversity quotient drops when faith remains stagnant as adversity increases. To sustain a hundred percent adversity quotient, faith must grow as adversity increases, maintaining a one to one ratio. By maintaining a hundred percent adversity quotient, one’s faith grows sturdier as adversity batters him the stronger.
Having explored the concept of adversity quotient, it is important for us to take note that it was not for AQ that Jesus underwent sufferings. He did not need any faith flexing and character building. It was more to challenge us that if he, the Messiah of God, willingly took the role of the Son of Man with all its implications of sufferings and tribulations, with how much more alacrity should we go through testing for our own spiritual benefit! – Rev. Fr. Dan Domingo P. delos Angeles, Jr., DM. Email:firstname.lastname@example.org. Website: www.frdan.org.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY: God our Father, as we thank you for the gift of eternal life, we ask you for the grace to persevere in all adversities in life. Grant this through Christ our Lord. Amen.
SAINT OF THE DAY: St. Vincent de Paul, Priest, Patron of Charitable Societies. He was born of a poor family in France in 1581. He spent a comfortable life as chaplain of an aristocratic family in Paris. In 1617, while hearing the confession of a sick farmer, he realized the terrible spiritual conditions of peasants. He vowed to offer his life for the poor and the formation of priests.