*Tuesday 31St October 2023 Daily Reflection and Meditation*
_“Not all of us can do great things, but we can do small things with great love.”_
It is by doing everything, whether small or big, but with great love, that will contribute to the growth of the Kingdom of God from a tiny mustard seed to a huge tree that all birds of air can have their nests.
_If you are a teacher, teach with great love. If you are a medical doctor, treat your patients me with love. If you are a maid, serve your master/mistress with great love. If you are a boss somewhere, treat your subordinates with love._ Do everything with greater love and it will make a difference and guarantee you a heavenly ticket.
_*Blessed day to you and happy feast to the Jesuits*_
TUESDAY OF THE THIRTIETH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME YEAR A 2023
_*Memorial of St Alphonsus Rodriguez, SJ, Religious*_
He was born in Segovia in Spain on 25th July 1532, and died on October 31st 1617 at the age of 85 in Palma, Spain. He was a cloth merchant, married and with children. Following the death of his wife and children, he was inspired to become a Jesuit. On entering the Jesuits, he found himself too old to study for the priesthood and too weak to take up a religious brother’s work but the Jesuit Provincial admitted him. After his first vows he was appointed porter or door-keeper of the Jesuit College. He spent his time in quiet prayer and meditation. He performed his menial task as a door-keeper with great love and this led him to holiness and a great saint we have today.
_*Happy feast to all Jesuits*_
*”DO EVERYTHING, SMALL AND GREAT, BUT WITH GREAT LOVE.”*
_Jesus said, “What is the Kingdom of God like? To what can I compare it? It is like a mustard seed that a man took and planted in the garden. When it was fully grown, it became a large bush and the birds of the sky dwelt in its branches.” Luke 13:18–19_
*Readings: Romans 8:18-25. Luke 13:18-21*
Usually, the mustard seed is very small. At first, when you hold it in your hand, you may not think of what huge a tree can arise from it. When planted under ideal conditions, the seed can grow into a tree upwards of twenty feet tall. Just imagine: from a tiny seed to a tree of twenty feet!
When you think of the call of being an apostle, spreading the gospel to the ends of the earth, what comes to mind? Perhaps the first thought is of those who have been entrusted with a very large, public and vibrant ministry. In this case, it is easier to see the good fruit born of one’s apostolic works. But what about you? For most people, they may strive to love and serve others in every small way they can, and they fail to see the abundance of good fruit born from their efforts. When this happens, some may become discouraged and lose zeal for the spreading of the gospel.
Consider the mustard seed. Planting this small seed is representative of much of our apostolic endeavors. God calls us to do small acts of kindness, share our faith in subtle and even hidden ways, serve out of love even when it is unnoticed, and to do so without ceasing. Do these small acts
bear fruit for the Kingdom of God? Of course, “Yes.”
St Alphonsus Rodriguez became a saint just because of doing small things with great love. One of these small things included just opening the door of the Jesuit college. In fact, St Mother Theresa echoed these sentiments when she said: “Not all of us can do great things, but we can do small things with great love.” It could be just a warm smile, a small act of love, spreading joy, being compassionate. Hellen Keller to echo the words of St Mother Tereza also said: “I long to accomplish a great and noble task, but it is my chief duty to accomplish small tasks as if they were great and noble.” St Teresa of Avila also said, “Accustom yourself continually to make acts of love, for they enkindle and melt the soul,” while St Tereza of Lisieux hit it hard when she said that, “Without love, deeds, even the most brilliant, count as nothing.” Therefore, these small tasks, though insignificant but done in love, make the kingdom of God grow big like the mustard seed.
*Reflection:* Ponder these words of St Paul that he wrote to the Corinthians: I may speak in the tongues of men or/and of angels, but without love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. I may even have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge. I may even have faith that can move mountains, but without love, I am nothing, and nothing indeed. I may give all that I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but without love, I gain nothing. Love is patient, love is kind.
Doing everything with love, whether small or great, makes a big difference, contributing in a great way to the spread of the Kingdom of God.
*Prayer:* _My God, you desire that your Kingdom grow far and wide through our efforts of love. Use me, dear Lord, to plant your seeds of faith and charity every day. May I never tire of doing everything, whether small or big, with great love. Let me delight in serving you in my little ways even when there is no one to recognize them. Amen_
*Have a blessed Tuesday*
_Rev Fr Francis Wambua, SJ_
*Jesuits of the Eastern Africa Province*