A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke 12: 8-12
Jesus said to his disciples: "I tell you, everyone who acknowledges me before others the Son of Man will acknowledge before the angels of God. But whoever denies me before others will be denied before the angels of God.
"Everyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but the one who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven. When they take you before synagogues and before rulers and authorities, do not worry about how or what your defense will be or about what you are to say. For the Holy Spirit will teach you at that moment what you should say."
“Jesus said to his disciples: "I tell you, everyone who acknowledges me before others the Son of Man will acknowledge before the angels of God. But whoever denies me before others will be denied before the angels of God.”
I will be the first person to tell you I am not perfect and have not always acknowledged God before others. When I hear a contradiction, I usually remain quiet instead of opposing someone. However, there is a day that stands out in my memory when I was “in a pickle”. It was when I attended a two-day conference located about an hour away. I recall most of my co-workers and I carpooled for at least one of the days. I carpooled the first day and drove myself the second day.
On the second day, the group was recording their reimbursement for driving 120-mile round trip for each day. We claimed our mileage, one person at a time, using the same computer. I was the last one to input my information and the person next to me gave me instructions. She told me to record the mileage for the two days, but I said I couldn’t since I only drove one day. She gave me an expected look, as the whole table was audience to my honesty, and said, “Well, everyone else did.” I had just inadvertently called out all my co-workers, including my boss. So, I said the first thing that came to my mind, “Well, I have to answer to God for this.” I did not deny my Lord by lying to get paid a few extra dollars. I could have caved in to the pressure of cheating, but instead I took comfort in my own words.
I was greatly saddened by the darkness of my co-worker’s choice. And I felt bad about causing a rift at work, even though I knew it was the right thing to do. We are all called to stand up for what is right according to God’s laws. We deny our God if we don’t.
The following day I received an email from my boss, thanking me for what I said and to forgive her error. She had second thoughts and changed her mileage. I was very surprised to find my actions and words could help someone else, because I only expected to be ridiculed. We should acknowledge God in all that we do by making honest choices and forgiving others as Jesus forgives. We can examine ourselves in our everyday actions and ask ourselves, “Am I acknowledging God in my daily life?” If so, then others may follow suit and “the Son of Man will acknowledge (you) before the angels of God”.