Daily Reflection – 10/21/19
Someone in the crowd said to Jesus, “Teacher, tell my brother to share the inheritance with me.” He replied to him, “Friend, who appointed me as your judge and arbitrator?” Then he said to the crowd, “Take care to guard against all greed, for though one may be rich, one’s life does not consist of possessions.” Then he told them a parable. “There was a rich man whose land produced a bountiful harvest. He asked himself, ‘What shall I do, for I do not have space to store my harvest?’ And he said, ‘This is what I shall do: I shall tear down my barns and build larger ones. There I shall store all my grain and other goods and I shall say to myself, “Now as for you, you have so many good things stored up for many years, rest, eat, drink, be merry!” But God said to him, ‘You fool, this night your life will be demanded of you; and the things you have prepared, to whom will they belong?’ Thus will it be for the one who stores up treasure for himself but is not rich in what matters to God.”( Luke 12:13-21)
In today’s Gospel, Jesus reminds us of the nature of our lives in this world and warns against believing in material salvation. We do not take our material wealth with us, and it does not matter one iota when we leave it behind. We can plan for our retirements, and there isn’t anything wrong with that, but that does not guarantee a life of leisure, or life in this world or the next at all.
Possessions are not eternal; the present physical life, with all its temptations and snares, is not eternal either. Caritas is eternal, within the Trinitarian life. We do not need bigger barns or houses to store up that treasure; we need to open our hearts wider to the Holy Spirit to prepare for our eternal life with the Lord. As Paul wrote to the Colossians “Put to death, then, the parts of you that are earthly: immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and the greed that is idolatry.”
So what does it mean to be rich toward God. Jesus doesn’t say in the context of this parable but all we need to do is to go back and review the lessons and parables that lead into this passage to get an answer to this important question: “Being rich toward God entails using one’s resources for the benefit of one’s neighbor in need, as the Samaritan did (10:25-37). Being rich toward God includes intentionally listening to Jesus’ words, as Mary did (10:38-42). Being rich toward God consists of prayerfully trusting that God will provide for the needs of life (11:1-13, 12:22-31). Being rich toward God involves selling possessions and giving alms as a means of establishing a lasting treasure in heaven (12:32-34).”
So what about you? Are you rich toward God or are you in danger of being smothered by your money, concern about money and possessions? What can you do to begin to turn towards God and begin to accumulate treasure in heaven?
Today and every day we are paving our road to heaven. What is the path we will pave today by our choices? Will Jesus approve of our path? I pray so!
Prayer of The Day
Almighty ever-living God, grant that we may always conform our will to Yours and serve Your majesty in sincerity of heart. Teach us to lay up riches in heaven and l assist us in our daily struggles against the idols of the world.
In today’s world, we are enticed on every front to accumulate wealth, possessions and status, but today Jesus reminds us that when we die, our wealth, our possessions, and our status will not matter. The only criterion we will be judged on is whether we have worked to accumulate the riches only God can give. Today may be a good day to ask ourselves: Who and what is most important in my life? Is it money, status, possessions, esteem? Or is it the people that I love or the many individuals who are in need? Do I strive to make a difference in our world by my love, care, and generosity? Do I freely share the many gifts that God has given me?