In today’s Gospel (Wednesday, June 23, 2010), Jesus tells us to be careful of false prophets. Whenever we encounter a new person we might wonder ‘Can I trust this person?’ We know nothing about them. Can we trust them to tell the truth? Can we count on them to do their share?
We need to give new people some basic level of trust. Then, over time, we come to know them better and hopefully to trust them more and to be able to count on them. How do we know when we count on them? Jesus tells us the answer is to see if they bear good fruit or bad fruit.
As I prepare to begin my new assignment next week as the Parochial Vicar at Our Lady of the Lakes, I am very much aware that very few people there will know me. If I go there and do things just to impress people, they will not see who I truly am. I don’t intent to go there and try to “set the world on fire” because I would rather build my credibility with the people first. I will be myself. This doesn’t mean I will do nothing at first. Of course, I will do what is asked of me but I will do it in a way respectful of the people and their local traditions. I hope by being myself they will see me as I strive to be, a caring, honest, dedicated servant priest of God. They will see the fruit of my labor. Then, as they come to know me better they will come to trust in me and count on me.
Then, we can all work together to grow in our own relationships with Jesus and to bring the gospel to the whole world.
When you are starting a new job or any new role do you try to “set the world on fire” or do you build relationships with the people around you, learning the local way of doing things?
Fr. Jeff, another wonderful read. I completely agree that trust is built and getting to know someone is key. What struck me the most was the “count on you” part. It certainly held true for you and certainly in my family. We will always be eternally grateful for being such a part of our family. Continued God’s blessings as you start this new chapter.