Gospel LK 16:1-13
Jesus said to his disciples,
"A rich man had a steward
who was reported to him for squandering his property.
He summoned him and said,
'What is this I hear about you?
Prepare a full account of your stewardship,
because you can no longer be my steward.'
The steward said to himself, 'What shall I do,
now that my master is taking the position of steward away from me?
I am not strong enough to dig and I am ashamed to beg.
I know what I shall do so that,
when I am removed from the stewardship,
they may welcome me into their homes.'
He called in his master's debtors one by one.
To the first he said,
'How much do you owe my master?'
He replied, 'One hundred measures of olive oil.'
He said to him, 'Here is your promissory note.
Sit down and quickly write one for fifty.'
Then to another the steward said, 'And you, how much do you owe?'
He replied, 'One hundred kors of wheat.'
The steward said to him, 'Here is your promissory note;
write one for eighty.'
And the master commended that dishonest steward for acting prudently.
"For the children of this world
are more prudent in dealing with their own generation
than are the children of light.
I tell you, make friends for yourselves with dishonest wealth,
so that when it fails, you will be welcomed into eternal dwellings.
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.
If, therefore, you are not trustworthy with dishonest wealth,
who will trust you with true wealth?
If you are not trustworthy with what belongs to another,
who will give you what is yours?
No servant can serve two masters.
He will either hate one and love the other,
or be devoted to one and despise the other.
You cannot serve both God and mammon."
+Prayer: Breathe in me O Holy Spirit, that my thoughts may all be holy, act in me O Holy Spirit, that my work too may be holy, draw my heart O Holy Spirit, that I love but what is holy, strengthen me O Holy Spirit, to defend all that is holy, guard me then O Holy Spirit, that I always may be holy. Amen.
“Prepare a full account of your stewardship.” What does it mean to, ‘prepare a full account of your stewardship?’ It would seem that it implies that the steward is under obedience and the steward has been given a task to accomplish and the one asking for this account has a right to it.
The day will come, for each and everyone of us, when our Heavenly Father will call us home and we will be asked to render a full account of our stewardship. We do not know when that day will come, but we are assured that it will come when our time on earth is over, and our eternal life begins. We don’t think much about the end of our life, but perhaps if we did, it would profoundly affect how we live life in the present moment, with the gifts of God entrusted to each of us.
First of all, what are the gifts entrusted to me personally? Think upon this prayerfully. Ponder those in your life, each person, see their face, and the gift they are to you, each in their own way. Maybe some are difficult and cause you suffering. Thank God right now for every single one of them, for they’re part of the stewardship entrusted to you. Ponder the work you are doing, the duties entrusted to you and the things you find difficult, take a moment to truly look at them with Jesus, and thank Him, because He is with you in them. Now think upon the responsibilities you carry, identify at least one thing that you just don’t like doing. Be honest. Now humbly thank God for it, for it too is Gift. For me, I think to remain faithful to the gifts given, I must first be grateful for the gifts given. Gratitude opens my heart and expands it. It renders it less likely to ‘pick and choose God’s gifts’ but rather to receive them all from His hands.
When I was a young woman, perhaps in my thirties, my Father sent me an email. I saved it and I keep it in the back of my Divine Office. My father died in 2007 but his wisdom still helps me. He wrote: “It is always important to keep the proper perspective on life and not let irrelevant things intrude into your mind and mission. Always seek to do His work and everything else will fall into place. We must all remind ourselves that we are here for a purpose. We must seek that purpose prayerfully and then follow His lead.” For me, the ‘irrelevant things’ are mammon- that which clammers for my attention and servitude. They wage war against my wholehearted love and devotion of God alone. They are not worth the time of day.
Questions: What has God gifted me with in my life? What has He entrusted to me today and what am I doing with it? Am I grateful for what He has entrusted to me, or resentful because its not________. Did I thank God for everything in my life that He has asked me to carry, to do, or to accept? What responsibility am I running from? What do I fear I’m lacking in?
“Gratitude brings us the greatest graces.” (St Therese)