Am I an Unprofitable Servant?
Malvern Minute


November 14, 2017 – Tuesday of the Thirty-Second Week in Ordinary Time

Whoever loves me will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him. Alleluia, alleluia!


Mark J. Poletunow, Malvern President (


Click for: Readings for the day (From the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops)


A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke (17:7-10)


Jesus said to the Apostles:
“Who among you would say to your servant
who has just come in from plowing or tending sheep in the field,
‘Come here immediately and take your place at table’?
Would he not rather say to him,
‘Prepare something for me to eat.
Put on your apron and wait on me while I eat and drink.
You may eat and drink when I am finished’?
Is he grateful to that servant because he did what was commanded?
So should it be with you.
When you have done all you have been commanded, say,
‘We are unprofitable servants;
we have done what we were obliged to do.'”


Reflect: When you have done all you have been commanded, say, “We are unprofitable servants; we have done what we were obliged to do.”  Whenever we believe that we are walking well with Jesus and doing what he expects, there can be a tendency to be prideful, and, perhaps, to even think that we are better than others who aren’t doing what we do. Just to set things straight, Jesus provides this Gospel passage that reminds us to stick to what it is that he asks of us, and to look at it as nothing more than what we as beloved creatures of God should do. Do what we need to do, and trust that, if we are walking with Jesus, we are exactly where God wants us to be. It is in that that we give him honor and glory and praise. At the judgment day, we hope to be counted among God’s chosen ones because of our faithfulness, our trust in him. In today’s first reading from the Book of Wisdom (2:23-3:9), we hear: “they seemed, in the view of the foolish, to be dead; and their passing away was thought an affliction and their going forth from us, utter destruction. But they are in peace. For if before men, indeed, they be punished, yet is their hope full of immortality; Chastised a little, they shall be greatly blessed, because God tried them and found them worthy of himself. As gold in the furnace, he proved them, and as sacrificial offerings he took them to himself. In the time of their visitation they shall shine…” That is our hope: that if we do what we have been commanded by God, although we consider ourselves unprofitable servants, we can live in the hope of immortality. May Jesus Christ be our focus and goal!


Questions: How might God be inviting me to be a servant leader in the ordinary situations of my daily life? Am I letting pride about my relationship with Jesus or my response as a missionary disciple get in the way of walking more closely, more authentically with the Lord? Who in my life has been a shining example of faithfulness and service to the Lord? Is there anything that I can imitate from their example?


Pray: Loving God, help me to do what it is you ask of me. Not for my own glory and exaltation, but because of my desire to trust you, to be faithful to you, and to seek you with all my heart. I pray this in the powerful and perfect name of Jesus. Amen.


God so loved the world that he gave his Only Begotten Son, so that all who believe in him may not perish, but may have eternal life.



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