Wait! I need
to ask.

“Give your servant, therefore, an understanding heart to judge your people and to distinguish right from wrong.”

We look to continue our process of growth and becoming in our Christian journey; to become better in our walk with Jesus and each other.

In our Old testament scripture, we encounter Solomon, the young successor to his father, David, who had just died. Solomon, age twelve, took David’s throne. Before his passing, David acknowledged Solomon’s intelligence and wisdom saying: “You are wise; you will know what to do to.”

It is longstanding worldly human practice to go with what people say about us. We trust their wisdom and understanding, especially if they are people of power in our lives. Our bosses compliment us, we eat it up. A talented person says we are talented or special, we trust their judgment. A professor notes our intelligence, we trust that.

It would have been easy for Solomon to just trust what his father had said. After all, these were words from David’s death bed – words most people value in a very special way. He was wise and intelligent according to his father, the King. Thus, when God spoke to Solomon, Solomon could have asked for anything else. Why ask for wisdom and intelligence if he already had it? Instead, he humbled himself before God. He accounted himself as having nothing and asked God for the very things his father said he already had.

It should be this way for us as we grow and develop in our Christian walk. We should be the children of our heavenly Father asking Him for all gifts. This requires vast humility. Having that kind of humility is why Solomon was blessed and praised by God! Having that kind of humility gave Solomon not only the gift of wisdom and intelligence, but also long life, riches, success, and the life of his enemies.

St. Paul expands on this saying: We know that all things work for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose.

If we love God, if we walk humbly with Him, if we trust judgment to Him and stay aligned with His will, we will be vastly rewarded. The littlest ones in our lives get this in a special way. If they are asked to do something or go somewhere, if they are asked to make a judgment, their instinct is to stop, say wait, and say: ‘I need to ask.’

This is what God is seeking from us. I think I am wise – Wait, I need to ask. I think I know what I should do – Wait, I need to ask. My judgments are correct and righteous – Wait, I need to ask.

The treasure hid in a field is God’s gifts for us. It is the kingdom and all it holds for us. There is a great treasure for us if we only ask.

Reflection for the 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time

Humility

O Lord, it’s so hard
to be humble.

My child, conduct your affairs with humility, and you will be loved more than a giver of gifts. Humble yourself the more, the greater you are, and you will find favor with God. What is too sublime for you, seek not, into things beyond your strength search not.

The Book or Sirach has been used throughout the history of the Church to present moral teaching to catechumens (those preparing for baptism) and to the faithful.

The Book’s author was a sage, and was filled with love for wisdom, the law, and divine worship. As a wise and experienced observer he spoke to his contemporaries, and speaks to us, about maintaining faith and integrity.

Sirach organized his book by subject matter including: the individual, family, and community in their relations with one another and with God. It discusses friendship, education, poverty and wealth, laws, religious worship, and many other matters that are important to us even today.

Jesus was calling the people he was dining with to recall the wisdom Sirach offered centuries earlier. They had forgotten. He reminds them of the humility they were to exercise.

God calls us to live humbly, to be poor in spirit and meek as so well recorded in the Sermon on the Mount. All of Jesus’ teachings were focused on calling us to recognize where true treasure and greatness lay.

Jesus calls us into a relationship with God who is perfect while we are to acknowledge our imperfection and sin. We must be humble enough to see our shortcomings and rely on God for the forgiveness and redemption we need.

Jesus calls us to live with each other and our wider community as servants, and not just servants, but servants open enough to welcome all as our brothers and sisters.

Jesus calls us to live simply and without reliance on the things or the honors the world offers. We must remember what God offers us is far greater. He is our treasure and greatness. St. Paul reminds us that living in relationship with God, being members of His community, the Holy Church, gives us entry into real greatness – the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, the company of angels, the assembly of our brothers and sisters in glory, and God Himself. We come to Him through Jesus, our mediator who covers us in the blood – the blood He shed in humility to the Father’s will.

It is hard to be humble, meek, poor in spirit, and simple. Let us set forth with the humility to recognize that and to know by God’s grace we will work diligently to gain humility.