Ordinary time week 11, Mt 6:1-6,16-18
An Indian Master said the one most selfish one letter word is the letter “I”. Everything revolves around “I”. iPhone, iPad, I like, I paid for it, I dislike it, I want it…What is the “I” stand for? It stands for expectations: I should be treated like this, I should be loved like this…I should be given these many marks…We are grown up like this, we only learn to take. We are all leading a life of high expectations.
I tell you a story. Some of you may already hear it. There is a young man who came to a wise man asking to become his disciples. The master told him “throw it away”. The young man thought that his master meant what he had in his hands. He did it. The Master said again “throw it away”. This time he thought that it should be his bag. He did it. But the master repeated “Throw it away” The young man didn’t know what to do because he had nothing on him right now. The master said “yourself, throw it away” (ego). To follow someone the first thing to do is empty our self.
In today Gospel, Jesus tells his followers and for us how to give alms, how to pray, and how to fast. The only one problem here is the “I selfish” who wants to attract the people notice, the expectation of having compensation: the human glory said Pope Francis. This selfish “I” puts us to do everything to be in the first place, in the central instead of God himself. We get what we want: the people notice. That is why Jesus said: they had already their reward. There is no more place for God in these actions because it is full of our self. One of the beatitude is “Happy are the poor in spirit, theirs is Kingdom of heaven” Mt 5,3. It is not the selfish "I" but the poor in spirit who will seek the Kingdom of God because they empty themselves to make a place for God, a place for God’s grace.
Pray, brothers and sisters that God help us to “empty ourselves”, and to fill us with his grace and his Words.