The Secret of Apostolic Greatness!

Luke 4:22

And all spoke well of Him, and wondered at the gracious words which proceeded out of His mouth; and they said, “Is not this Joseph’s son?”

Monsters of pride, such as Hitler, can gain a following if they tell their egotistical audience “We share a common destiny of Greatness!” But if we perceive there’s no Pride-building project going on, we will often repudiate even the humble.  Thus, when Jesus humbly and truly announces that He is the fulfillment of Scripture, people initially speak well of Him: after all, He might be an up-and-comer in the Pride Game to whom we can hitch our wagon!  But then He shoots this prideful hope down and starts to praise foreigners and not us!  The room temperature drops considerably at that.  It dropped for the Apostles too, when they followed in Jesus’ footsteps and emptied themselves of all that they had to become rich toward God.  People thought they were throwing their lives away.  God thought they were delightfully humble and made them the foundation of the Church and judges over the twelve tribes of Israel.


Mark P. Shea is a popular Catholic writer and speaker. The author of numerous books, his most recent work is The Work of Mercy (Servant) and The Heart of Catholic Prayer (Our Sunday Visitor). Mark contributes numerous articles to many magazines, including his popular column “Connecting the Dots” for the National Catholic Register. Mark is known nationally for his one minute “Words of Encouragement” on Catholic radio. He also maintains the Catholic and Enjoying It blog and regularly blogs for National Catholic Register. He lives in Washington state with his wife, Janet, and their four sons.

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