One Minute Reflection – 8 November – Friday of the Thirty First week in Ordinary Time week in Ordinary Time, Year C, Gospel: Luke 16:1–8 and The Memorial of St Elizabeth of the Trinity O.Carm (1880-1906)
“The master commended the dishonest steward for his prudence”…Luke 16: 8
REFLECTION – “But what does Jesus wish to tell us with this parable? And with its surprising conclusion? The Evangelist follows the parable of the dishonest steward with a short series of sayings and recommendations on the relationship we must have with money and the goods of this earth. These short sentences are an invitation to a choice that presupposes a radical decision, a constant inner tension. Life is truly always a choice – between honesty and dishonesty, between fidelity and infidelity, between selfishness and altruism, between good and evil.
… As a result, it is necessary to make a fundamental decision between God and mammon, it is necessary to choose between the logic of profit as the ultimate criterion for our action and the logic of sharing and solidarity. If the logic of profit prevails, it widens the gap between the poor and the rich, as well as increasing the ruinous exploitation of the planet. On the other hand, when the logic of sharing and solidarity prevails, it is possible to correct the course and direct it to a fair development for the common good of all. Basically, it is a matter of choosing between selfishness and love, between justice and dishonesty and ultimately, between God and Satan. If loving Christ and one’s brethren is not to be considered as something incidental and superficial but, rather, the true and ultimate purpose of our whole existence, it will be necessary to know how to make basic choices, to be prepared to make radical renouncements, if necessary, even to the point of martyrdom. Today, as yesterday, Christian life demands the courage to go against the tide, to love like Jesus, who even went so far as to sacrifice Himself on the Cross.
We could then say, paraphrasing one of St Augustine’s thoughts, that through earthly riches we must procure for ourselves those true and eternal riches – indeed, if people exist who are prepared to resort to every type of dishonesty to assure themselves an always unpredictable material well-being, how much more concerned we Christians must be to provide for our eternal happiness with the goods of this earth (cf. Discourses, 359, 10). Now, the only way of bringing our personal talents and abilities and the riches we possess to fruition for eternity is to share them with our brethren, thereby showing that we are good stewards of what God entrusts to us . Jesus said: “He who is faithful in a very little is faithful also in much and he who is dishonest in a very little is dishonest also in much” (Lk 16: 10).
PRAYER – My Lord and my God, You have prayed that we may be in You and You in us. This is the guiding consolation of our life and the source of our prayer. Lead us to Yourself, guide us and teach us, that we may never stray from You and the way You set out. May we share and build the unity of Your people and the goods of the earth. Holy St Elizabeth of the Trinity, in your young life you followed the way of the Lord, the way of the Cross, doing all for God by the love of the Holy Spirit. Please pray for us, amen.