Working for What Endures
25th Sunday Ordinary Time
September 18, 2022
“The person who is trustworthy in very small matters is also trustworthy in great ones; and the person who is dishonest in very small matters is also dishonest in great ones.”
from Luke 16:1-13
Christ reminds us in this Sunday’s gospel (Luke 16:1-13) that one day our money will fail us, and that we should invest it wisely and spiritually “before it fails us” (in other words, when it comes to an end or when we realize it can no longer buy us health or happiness). Money is something everyone needs, and a commodity almost no one seems to have enough of. Yet it cannot actually buy us anything that really lasts, much less eternal life.
I once read something that has stuck with me over the years, and it went something like this: “If you have ever inherited and slept in someone else’s bed, know that you will one day go the same way they did”. In other words, nothing on earth is permanent. This is something we all realize. But Jesus makes it clear that how we use the talents, gifts, money and opportunities that we have now will determine our position, responsibility and “wealth” in the world to come.
We are all in the midst of a great hiring interview for our permanent home to come. Each of us on earth has been given a certain amount of time, known only to God, to complete our mission and to use what God has given us for his glory and the good of others. We don’t all have the same gifts, time, wealth or mission, and this is not what matters. All God asks of us is that we use what we have been given and the knowledge and faith we have received to the glory of God as best we can. Being faithful in small things matters. God notices everything. Every act of kindness, every small sacrifice, every way we have glorified God, especially by helping others, will have a great reward in the permanent and eternal world to come.
The biggest fools on earth are the ones who endlessly pile up wealth for themselves, and have little or no regard for others. Such people are missing the whole point of life. God left us an instruction manual, the Scriptures, and our Church to help us interpret them. If we are not familiar with what the owner and creator of our world has in mind for our brief lifespans, we run the risk of going very fast and accomplishing nothing, and all this because we didn’t follow the directions (the Scriptures and the Church) the Lord has given us.