The Gospel Today
Friday of the Thirteenth Week in Ordinary Time
As Jesus passed by,
he saw a man named Matthew sitting at the customs post.
He said to him, “Follow me.”
And he got up and followed him.
While he was at table in his house,
many tax collectors and sinners came
and sat with Jesus and his disciples.
The Pharisees saw this and said to his disciples,
“Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?”
He heard this and said,
“Those who are well do not need a physician, but the sick do.
Go and learn the meaning of the words,
I desire mercy, not sacrifice.
I did not come to call the righteous but sinners.”
Reflection (Sem. Herwyn T. Bulaun)
Our work inside the boundaries of the Church must not be different from our work outside. Our participation in the Church encourages us to radiate the work of God in our life to others. Our work can be an instrument of God wherein some people encounter God through us. Notice that in the Gospel for today, Jesus asks Matthew to follow Him where he is doing his job.
An ordinary employee works eight hours a day. He meets different people in work place. As members of the Church, we are invited to practice and live-out our Christian values, such as honesty, patience, generosity, and others. Then, our job is not only a source of income for our loved ones, but an opportunity to let others to have a foretaste of the kingdom of God.
When I was still working, I used to visit the workers in the building construction. I was just there, spending some moments in conversation about their lives and struggles. One time, a construction worker came to my office and was requesting if he could have a cash advance because his wife was in the hospital. I was aware of the “No Cash Advance Policy” of the company. I felt the need of that worker. I could not approve a cash advance but I could do something to at least help the person. I accompanied the person outside my office and took some money from my wallet and lent him some cash. He was thankful. Although even now he was not able to pay back all the money, the smile on his face was enough payment.