Good morning, happy Tuesday, and many blessings.
The Gospel today (Luke 17:7-10) narrates the parable, which is found only in Luke’s Gospel, and has no parallel in the other Gospels. The parable wants to teach that our life has to be characterized by an attitude of service. It begins with three questions and at the end Jesus himself gives the answer.
What should a disciple expect as he or she serves God faithfully? What should our attitude be as we render consistent service to Christ? Jesus shows us in this parable what our perspective should be when we serve God and others in the community of faith, the Church. Jesus teaches us the proper attitude of a servant of God as He tells us about a landowner who has a small farm and one faithful servant.
It treats of three questions taken from daily life, and therefore, the listeners must think each one on his or her own experience to give a response according to that experience. The first question: “Which of you, with a servant ploughing or minding sheep would say to him when he returned from the fields, ’Come and have your meal at once?” All will answer: “No!” Second question: “Would he not be more likely to say, ‘Get my supper ready; fasten your belt and wait on me while I eat and drink. You yourself can eat and drink afterwards?” All will answer: “Yes! Certainly!” Third question: “Must he be grateful to the servant for doing what he was told?” All will answer “No!” The way in which Jesus asks the questions, people become aware in which way he wants to orientate our thought. He wants us to be servants to one another.
In Jesus' day, a servant did not have any significant rights. A servant had to do what pleased his or her master regardless of thanks or praise. A servant had no right to expect approval or commendation. When a servant worked hard and completed a long list of demands, there was no expectation of praise; that servant only did what was expected. Jesus is Lord, Master, and Savior. He has called us to follow and serve him. Of course, the incredible blessing is that when we come to him as a servant, he welcomes us as a sister or brother and friend and, at the end of this life, will tell us "Come, ... inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the creation of the world" (Matthew 25:34).
True religion is not all about obligations, but it is about the Spirit of God working in you, leading you to act above and beyond the requirements. The servant in the gospel of today is not to be praised because he is only doing what he has been commanded to do. We cannot be saints if we do only the things our faith has obliged us to do. To be saints, we need to go beyond the minimum and do the very ordinary things in an extra-ordinary way.
Get this point straight. In this Gospel Jesus is using an example from every day to communicate to his disciples that his way of leading is totally different from the leadership of the world. Worldly leaders can use their influence unjustly and feel entitled to rewards and privileges simply because of their position. The way of Jesus suggests that serving others is a privilege in itself and no reward is necessary. We were called into a ministry of being present and serving.