Meditation is an ideal way to pray. Using God's word (Lectio Divina) allows me to hear, listen and reflect on what the Lord wants to say to me - to one of his disciples - just like He did two thousand years ago.
The best time to reflect is at the beginning of the day and for at least 15 to 30 minutes.
Prior to going to sleep, read the Mass readings for the next day and then, in the morning, reflect on the Meditation offered on this website.
I hope these daily meditations allow you to know, love and imitate the Lord in a more meaningful way.
God bless you!

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Mt 25:14-30 Investments and Returns

Thirty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time
(Click here for readings)

Jesus told his disciples this parable:  "A man going on a journey called in his servants and entrusted his possessions to them.  To one he gave five talents; to another, two; to a third, one --to each according to his ability.  Then he went away.  Immediately the one who received five talents went and traded with them, and made another five...But the man who received one went off and dug a hole in the ground and buried his master's money."

Going deeper.  This Gospel passage is often used for capital campaigns or to stimulate some sort of financial giving.  If the Lord has blessed you with financial success, then please give more.  But if we stayed at this level, I believe we would be missing out on the value of parables.  Parables allow people to go deeper.  

So why this parable, and why was it directed to the Apostles?  I believe it was because the Apostles were complaining.  Why did you pick us?  We are nothings.  We are nobodies.  We have no power, no position, no authority.  We count for nothing in this world.  What do you expect from us?  How in the world can we possibly help YOU?

Do you ask the same questions?  Ask no more.  You're worth more to the Lord than you think.  It's time to invest in your faith.

Investments and returns.  Did you hear about the two young ladies who ran in a state cross country meet and were disqualified for helping another girl (her opponent) finish the race?  

Two high school runners in Minnesota have been disqualified in the state girls cross country meet for helping an opponent who fell. 

Senior Kailee Kiminski and junior Tierney Winter, forfeited the race last weekend after assisting freshman Jessica Christoffer cross the finish line. 

All three were disqualified due to a high school league rule prohibiting the assistance of another runner.

"I just got tired and I fell, and it wasn't good, and then there were two girls that helped me... helped me finish and it was really nice of them," Christoffer told KEYC-TV.  "I'm really thankful for them.  It means a lot to me..."

Winter said she had no choice when seeing Christoffer fall just 50 meters from the finish line.  "I couldn't leave her there...I was like, I'll help her out and we'll see what happens...I wouldn't want to be left out there if it was me, so I just thought of myself there, too."

"I wouldn't want to be left out there if it was me, so I just thought of myself there, too."  That sounds familiar.  "Treat others the way you want to be treated" (cf. Lk 6:31).   "I was a stranger and you invited me in" (cf. Mt 25:35).

I find it eerie how the young lady's name is "Christoffer."  Don't you?  Oh well, we all know that our faith will, at times, "disqualify" us from this twisted world's bent-out-of-shape rules.  But like these two young runners, we shouldn't fear the Lord's golden rule of self sacrifice, for we know where that leads to on earth and in heaven. 

Do you know who won the race that day?  I don't.  In fact, it's hard to tell.  It seems like the winner did not get as much press coverage as the disqualified.  Apparently, the media outlets know a good story when they see it.  Actually, we all know a good story when we see it.  And Christ is that GOOD NEWS!

Long ago, these two young runners invested in their faith.  The returns are just now coming in.

The Twelve.  It must have taken a while for the Twelve to realize their worth in the Lord, and how the Lord was investing in them.  Sure they had their doubts in Christ, but their biggest doubts were in themselves.  Can we blame them?  Their family and friends had written them off.  But the Apostles noticed a pattern.  Throughout His life the Lord constantly invested His time, miracles and efforts with people of little-to-know economic, political or military prowess. 

To the Lord, it didn't matter what they were.  What mattered most was faith in God, not faith in themselves.

I know a lot of people who are careful in picking their friends.  They are fools!  Don't be fooled.  Invest in everyone.  As a priest, I have learned to invest my time with the sick and the healthy, the young and the elderly, the rich and the poor.  I need all of them more than they need me.  I need those who are better than me as much as I need those who are not better than me. 

I need them all and so do you.  They help us to grow, to be better.

God has given us some amazing treasures like faith, family and friends.  What we do with these will help us (and others) to grow.

We must seriously invest before we can hope to see any serious returns. 

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