Exodus 1:8-14, 22 / Matthew 10:34 - 11:1
We have accomplishments that we are proud of. Those accomplishments are not just a proof of our abilities but we are proud of them especially when those accomplishments have helped others in their difficulties and solved their problems.
Those accomplishments are not just like feathers in our caps or medals on our coats, they also remind us that people were grateful to us for the help that we rendered to them in their time of need.
But we also have to accept that over time and over generations, the good that we have done are forgotten and our names may not even be remembered by those who benefited from us.
Such was the case in the 1st reading. There came to power in Egypt a new king who knew nothing of Joseph. Yes, times have changed. The generation that knew what Joseph did for Egypt is gone. And what Joseph did was forgotten. And the people of Israel has become a threat to the Egyptians. Furthermore Egypt was not their homeland.
And it is futile for the Israelites to say to the Egyptians, "Don't you remember Joseph and what he did for you? How can you be so ungrateful?"
The people of Israel will now have to think of a way out of this. They will have to fend for themselves. But they themselves must not forget that God had also done great things for them.
Obviously, the help of man is in vain, but the mighty works of God will be from age to age and from generation to generation.
So let us not expect others to remember the good that we have done for them or want to have them beholden to us. And neither should we expect them to come to our help when we are in some kind of trouble.
Let us remember that our accomplishments are of no value if it is for self-gain. Whatever good that we do must be for the glory of God and for the good of our neighbour. And in our time of need, God will come to our help.