SUNDAY, THIRTY THIRD WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME
Prv 31:10-13….; Ps 128; 1 Thes 5: 1-6; Mt 25: 14-30
THE REWARD OF A FAITHFUL DISCIPLE
‘Man born a being of action Found confused, lacking direction A seed sprouted, yet struggling Yearning in the direction of the eternal sun’
When was the last time you created something? With your hands, you moulded a piece of dough perhaps, or even wrote your name on a piece of paper. Notice how when children build sand castles, it reflects a perfect innocence. An aeroplane leaves its smoky mark behind in the clouds, creating a trail in the sky. The creator leaves a part of themselves in their creation.
In this context, let us take a closer and kinder look at ourselves today. Made in the pure image and likeness of the omnipresent, omnipotent, mighty wonderful creator, each of us was made with a quality of his ingenuity. The creator has a plan and will bring it to fruition, for he is proud of and incharge of the work of his hands. Like the second reading of today tells us, ‘The day of the Lord shall come like a thief in the night’. And who will merit to see the maker face to face?
We are guided well in the Word of God about the qualities of a faithful and radiant Church. She is compared to a wife who is ‘excellent’, one who can be trusted in ‘all’ things. She has a charitable heart and reaches out to help others. Her beauty comes from within, unlike the worldly charisms of grandeur and pretence. Her real goodness comes from submission and fear of the Lord.
We are the Church – the bride, the wife, the jewel in the eyes of Christ. When He presents us to God the Father, we become acceptable to Him, we are purified and transformed. To be presentable, Christ must recognise us as his faithful disciples. We are measured both, by our faith and faithfulness. Our faith makes God give us the hopes and dreams of our hearts. Our faithfulness is our response to his plan for us. In the Gospel of today, Jesus tells us that even the little faithfulness that we show does not go unrewarded. We are each gifted according to our ability. What we make of these gifts, how we use them and multiply them is the evidence of our faithfulness to Him.
As human beings, right from the moment we exist, we are seeking the light of God, the nourishing light of our creator. In Romans 7:18, Paul says, “For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out.” Therefore, the question man faces is, “How can I overcome the struggle to be a faithful disciple?” We struggle every day, with the temptation of the world pulling us in different directions. We yearn in the direction of God and yet seek to find comfort in temporary pleasures. The Lord invites us to find solace in His word – “The LORD makes firm the steps of the one who delights in him; though he may stumble, he will not fall, for the LORD upholds him with his hand.” (Ps 37:23-24). Paul reminds us today, that we are not of the night, or, of the darkness. Yes, the good news is that struggles are part of life, but as long as God – your creator is in your life, he will provide comfort and strength.
God has given each person a wide variety of gifts, and he expects us to employ those gifts in his service. The Lord is not going to ask us how much we have done for him but how faithful we have been to that which he wanted us to do. The return God expects of us is commensurate with the gifts we have been given. The gifts we receive from God include skills, abilities, family connections, social positions, education, experiences, and more. For us, the children of God there are two important things:
(1) Finding out what God wants us to do; that is, determine what is the talent that he has given us, and then
(2) be faithful in the use of it. To some of us God may have given only a few things, and that may be upsetting to us; but if we are one–talent people, God expects us to be faithful with only that. Let us be grateful for our opportunities and use them for the greater glory of God.
Response: Blessed are all who fear the Lord.
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