October 19, 2020 (Monday of Week 29 Year II)
Whose will they be?
Dear friends in Christ, we live in a world where, we are taught to work hard to have the best things in life; and living in a capitalist environment, we struggle, to make more of our existence in terms of our material means. People struggle to be the best in their group particularly in ways measurable by material acquisitions. Do you however pause sometimes to ask yourself who will benefit from all that effort of yours, yourself or others?
In today’s first reading (Ephesians 2:1-10) Paul again talks about our redemption as something born out of the mercy of God. Humanity had been enslaved by sins and passions of the flesh, but in God there is mercy and fulness of redemption. So he says, “…We all once lived in the passions of our flesh, following the desires of body and mind … But God, who is rich in mercy, out of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead through our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ…” Paul says that this is by grace, born out of faith and not by any merit on our side—salvation is absolutely a free gift of God though we must co-operate by good deeds to take hold of this inheritance.
Today’s gospel (Luke 12:13-21) deals with the false security that comes from material wealth. A man from the crowd had called to Jesus, “Master, tell my brother to give me a share of our inheritance.” Maybe his brother is so greedy as to want to take everything, or he is in a hurry to have his share. Jesus told them, “Watch and be on your guard against avarice of any kind, for a man’s life is not made secure by what he owns, even when he has more than he needs.” Then he told them the parable of the rich man with a good harvest who was only interested in how to keep it all for himself without a mention of his neighbours and God. It was all about the “I” Unfortunately the demand is made for his soul that night, who will own all of that harvest he was planning to gather and store up?
It is truly tempting to think that if one has some certain amount of material wealth, he will be safe. A home is often wrecked and divided, sometimes beyond reconciliation, because of money. While what we own and posses should make us happy and give some sense of security, the opposite is often the case. It seems the richer you get in material things, the more insecure you become too. You often have to watch where you go, who you talk to and even where you worship, because you are afraid someone might be after your life. People often have to take up insurance against everything now: accident, fire, theft, disease, life etc. Some insurance companies are as rich as a country. Countries spend more on national security than they do on the welfare of their people. Individuals do the same. All of these however provides no answer to death. Families fight over even the insurance benefits and dispute the ‘wills’ of their late loved ones. All forms of security depending on material and human foundations fail. Our only true security is in God. We need to imbibe real and eternal values. The best way to feel safe is to live in God and never to hold on too tightly to earthly things.
Let us pray: O God, teach us to number our days aright and so come to share the peace of eternal glory. Amen. May the Almighty God bless you, the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen