Great crowds were traveling with Jesus, and he turned and addressed them, “If anyone comes to me without hating his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, and even his own life,
he cannot be my disciple. Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple.
Which of you wishing to construct a tower does not first sit down and calculate the cost to see if there is enough for its completion? Otherwise, after laying the foundation and finding himself unable to finish the work the onlookers should laugh at him and say, ‘This one began to build but did not have the resources to finish.’ Or what king marching into battle would not first sit down and decide whether with ten thousand troops he can successfully oppose another king advancing upon him with twenty thousand troops?
But if not, while he is still far away, he will send a delegation to ask for peace terms. In the same way,
anyone of you who does not renounce all his possessions cannot be my disciple.” Lk 14:25-33
Motto: „He cannot be my disciple.” – Companies, schools, shops and sects, all try to lure us: Be with us, join us! Every community would like to attract new members and for that purpose they make special promises. However, there are unpleasant conditions hidden in the small print in the footnotes. Here, Jesus points out the „small print” conditions. Actually, they are the ones that matter. Quite clearly, Jesus does not have the biggest catch in mind. We could even say that he does not fish with a net; rather he is fishing with a fishing rod. There are three prerequisites to fulfil so that we can follow Jesus: He demands total devotion which must be deeper than any sacred relationship between people. The Lord is first; ahead of everyone including myself. Secondly: It is necessary to accept difficulties and sufferings; Jesus calls it the cross. Jesus does not seduce with the promise of relief! Thirdly: One cannot just throw oneself into this undertaking in a notion that later one we can take a second look. We have to reflect very carefully what we are attempting. The commitment has to be complete, unlimited and final. He offers a great exchange: All for the one thing: for Christ, for himself.
Twenty-third Sunday in Ordinary Time – 08.09.2019
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