Thursday of the Twenty-Second Week in Ordinary Time

In our world, it is often the case that when we amass wealth or power, we jealously guard these goods as our own and are reluctant to share them. Even if we do share them, we often wish to control the way that the goods are used, or at least remind others of the source of those goods.

On the other hand, Jesus is not the sort of lord who holds everything for himself. All created things are God’s, actually. And yet, God does not hold jealously to his creation, or insist that we remember the origin (and true owner) of the goods that we claim as our own. This is true for spiritual goods as well as material goods, as Paul reminds the Corinthians. Rebuking those who insist on opposing the spiritual goods that were handed on by one apostle with those handed on by another, Paul declares, “everything belongs to you—Paul or Apollos or Cephas, or the world or life or death, or the present or the future—all belong to you, and you to Christ, and Christ to God” (1 Cor 3:22).

In his parable of the two sons, Jesus shows that, even when it comes to material goods, God holds nothing back. Both the younger son (often called the “prodigal”) and the older one demand what they think is theirs, in contrast to the Father, who tells the older brother, “son, you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours” (Lk 15:31). Our Lord holds nothing back, but offers us everything. Everything is yours, and you are Christ’s. Should you not make all things a gift in service of love? That is what God has made all things in offering them to you.

September 1st, 2016