Thought of the Day November 10, 2017 Desire for praise

By 10:08 AM

The desire for praise and recognition as an affirmation of self leaves the self empty and incomplete. But the decision to bring even the need for these signs to the cross with Jesus, who received no praise or affirmation in his self-sacrifice, is to become like Jesus victorious and glorious. The desire for praise makes the self the center of attention and not God.

Some people are deeply hurt because their good deeds go unrecognized. No one expresses public gratitude for their services or labors. It is hard to die to this desire especially when we strongly believe we deserve recognition and are owed it. And yet what did Jesus said about doing things so that people could see and applaud us? "Be on your guard against performing religious acts for people to see. Otherwise expect no recompense from your heavenly Father. When you give alms, for example, do not blow a horn before you in synagogues and streets like hypocrites looking for applause. You can be sure of this much, they are already repaid. In giving alms you are not to let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. Keep your deeds of mercy secret, and your Father who sees in secret will repay you" (Mt 6:1-4).

On the contrary, the attitude which the Lord desires us to have is expressed by Jesus in Lk: "When you have done all you have been commanded to do, say, 'We are useless servants. We have done no more than our duty'"(Lk 17:10). If praise comes unsolicited, then we are to receive it humbly, recognizing that it is God who is the source of all the good we accomplish. Like Mary, when Elizabeth sang her praises for acting on the Word of the Lord, we are to magnify the Lord, recognizing that he has done great things for us.

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