Power & Authority: Love & Humility
We may not think we have much power and authority. We may not think people listen to what we say at all. Or we might think who would even listen to what I have to say? And we would be so wrong. When we were baptized, we were given the same power and authority that those first disciples had. To cast out demons, to heal the sick, and bring good news to the poor. This is real power, it is real authority, given to us by God. Well if I have all this power and authority how come nothing happens?
Two things. First, our idea of power and authority is not what God has given us. When we think of power and authority, we think of being like a president or someone in control of some entity on earth. The power and authority given us by God goes far beyond earthly measures. We are bringing the gospel to people. Not to force them to love God, but to learn to love God of their own free will. We are teaching people to cast out the demons in their lives. They learn that with Jesus, there is power in His Name to do all things. And lastly, we are there to help people cure illnesses. There are many more illnesses than just physical. There is healing in God’s Word.
But none of this can be done unless we balance power and authority with love and humility. Today is the memorial for Padre Pio. God gave him power and authority. Allowing him to cast out demons and cure illnesses through the sacrament of confession. It is said Padre Pio could read hearts and tell people what sins they had forgotten to confess. Only a person of love and humility would have the power and authority to tell someone else their sins. Think about telling someone else their sins. Could you do it? Only through love and humility and the name of Jesus. Because if it is not done with love and humility you have lost a soul. Why would they listen to you?
Same question as what we started this little homily with. Today’s gospel is remarkable in that Jesus combines Power & Authority with Love & Humility. Pray that God grant you the love and humility to exercise the power and authority He has given you through His grace.
May the Lord bless you in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen