Saturday: July 11, 2020
Reference: Matthew 10:24-33
Matthew 10:24-25a The student is not above the teacher, nor a servant above his master. It is enough for the disciple to be like his teacher, and the servant like his master.
Without taking a closer look at today’s Gospel, we are likely to arrive at a conclusion far from what is really intended. In the light of today’s text, noting that the teacher is presented as the uttermost standard of a student and the Lord, the maximum status a servant can strive to attain, it does appear Jesus suggests ‘mediocrity’ and ‘just enough’ are fine. However, is this really all there is?
We are talking about the same Jesus who tells his disciples in John 14:12 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.’ Thus, by comparison it seems that are two faces of the same Jesus- one cheering for greater works and the other satisfied with ‘just enough’.
The crust of today’s text however extends beyond a comparison between mediocrity and excellence, is a matter of honour: ‘the student honouring his teacher and the servant honouring his master. Honour is presented because there are clear moments in time where we think we have learnt all we can from our teachers or masters and there is nothing else to receive.
We begin to take up an attitude that suggests ‘now the student has surpassed the master’ And such people no longer deserve to be honoured. That may seem acceptable in a human sense because we could actually outgrow a body of knowledge. However, regardless of how learned we become, in the school of the Spirit, we will always remain students and in the vineyard of the Lord, we remain servants.
My dear, there are transitions, but no graduations because the moment we graduate from the school of the Spirit and abandon the heart of service, our pride awards us a certificate; and that could be the start of real trouble.