Ordinary Time
Wednesday of the Twenty-Frist Week

“You recall, brothers, our toil and drudgery. Working night and day in order not to burden any of you, we proclaimed to you the gospel of God.” (1 Thessalonians 2:9.)

In commenting on these verses from today’s First Reading, Saint John Chrysostom writes:

“The sleep of a working man is sweet, whether he eats little or much.” Why does he add, “whether he eat little or much?” Both these things usually bring sleeplessness, namely, poverty and abundance. But the effect of hard work is such that neither poverty nor excess disrupt this servant’s sleep. Though throughout the whole day they are running about everywhere, ministering to their masters, being knocked about and hard pressed, having little time to catch their breath, they receive a sufficient recompense for their toils and labors in the pleasure of sleeping. And thus it has happened through the goodness of God toward humanity, that these pleasures are not to be purchased with gold and silver but with labor, with hard toil, with necessity and every kind of discipline. Not so with the rich. On the contrary, while lying on their beds, they are frequently without sleep throughout the night. Though they devise many schemes, they do not obtain much pleasure. For this reason also, from the beginning, God tied the man to labor, not for the purpose of punishing or chastising but for amendment and education. When Adam lived in idle leisure, he fell from paradise, but when the apostle labored abundantly and toiled hard, writing, “In labor and travail, working night and day,” then he was taken up into paradise and ascended to the third heaven!” (Homilies Concerning the Statues, 2.)

O God,
Who cause the minds of the faithful
to unite in a single purpose,
grant your people to love what you command
and to desire what you promise,
that, amid the uncertainties of this world,
our hearts may be fixed on that place
where true gladness is found.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
Who lives and reigns with You
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Glory to the Father
and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning,
is now, and will be forever. Amen