In today’s Gospel, Jesus asks the mother of James and John, what do you wish (Matt: 20:21)? Their mother asks Jesus to allow her sons to sit on Jesus’ right and left in the Kingdom of Heaven. This mother has a lot of moxie! In response, Jesus asks an additional question, directed at James and John: “Can you drink the cup that I am going to drink” (Matt 20:22)?
What do you wish?
I find the question, what do you wish, to be quite intriguing. If Jesus were sitting at a table across from you right now, and asked you that very question, how would you answer?
- Some of you might respond by requesting material comfort, in the form of money and a cushy lifestyle.
- Perhaps you might request power to rule over others.
- Maybe you seek fame.
My hope is that you would dispense with these types of requests, and you might ask for any of the following:
- Jesus, fill me with your love, for my fellow man, and inspire me to serve your people.
- Lord, give me Wisdom and Counsel to make prudent decisions.
- Have mercy on me, Lord and reconcile me to You.
When you ask for virtue, whether it be love, wisdom, counsel, or mercy, or any other virtue, you are asking to be more Christ-like. That is a very good thing. So, as you enter your time of prayer today, and Jesus asks you, “What do you wish?” ask for virtue! For, it is with the tools of virtue that we make our path home to Heaven much easier. Jesus never denies a request for virtue!
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