What’s in it for me? — Lk 14:12-14
By Fr. Joseph Gouin
American Martyrs Catholic Church
I recently read about a young girl who graduated from college and was advised by her mentor to become a member of a service club. She was told to do so because it would be “good for her career.” It was pointed out that it would be very helpful to have a support group of other professionals in her field who give her many opportunities to receive client referrals.
Taking his advice, she joined a service club and found that it gave her many good networking opportunities. But what began as a “What’s in it for me?” (furthering her career) turned into an experience of “getting much more out of it than she put into it.”
She found that the service work they did in the community, such as raising money and giving scholarships to students, was more rewarding than she could ever imagine. As they expanded their projects, she realized how blessed she was to be able to help others. The original reason for joining (good for business) was not the reason she stayed and got even more involved.
God transformed her “selfish motives” into something great. For the first time, she realized what St. Francis meant when he wrote in his famous Peace Prayer: “for it is in giving that we receive.”
This why Jesus tells us in Luke’s Gospel that we should help people what cannot pay us back. He wants also to experience the joy of giving.