READINGS for 2008-11-16
thE REWARDs OF A stEWARD
“Well done my good and faithful servant. Since you were faithful in small matters, I will give you great responsibilities.” – Matthew 25:21
My late father had imparted to me some basic Christian virtues like being honest and hardworking. These qualities proved to be essential to our business operation. Hard work as a student and when I joined the workforce paid dividends in terms of experience and knowledge. Now that I run a business, the experience of hard work and the practice of honesty and integrity have been my key success factors.
They say religion and business do not mix. I beg to disagree. The more I became honest in the way I treated our laborers and paid our taxes, the more the Father blessed the business. As I embraced the business principle of Christian stewardship, the Lord worked through our company. In the process, I enjoy the collateral blessings of being a steward. Rolly España
Do not be tempted to call any property your own. God allows us to use property for worthy stewardship.
Lord grant me the grace to fully embrace stewardship in property ownership.
St. Gertude, virgin, pray for us.
I am sure all husbands desire a perfect wife – or do they? Perhaps they think this might mean too much pressure on them to be the perfect husband! If so, then I say that is a good thing! That may be easy for me to say as a priest, but it is a basic fact that we should all be seeking perfection under the grace and guidance of the Holy Spirit. Without Him it is impossible. With Him, well, I hope it is possible to reach Perfection!
Proverbs 31:10-13, 19-20, 30-31
10 When one finds a worthy wife, her value is far beyond pearls. 11 Her husband, entrusting his heart to her, has an unfailing prize. 12 She brings him good, and not evil, all the days of her life. 13 She obtains wool and flax and makes cloth with skillful hands. 19 She puts her hands to the distaff, and her fingers ply the spindle. 20 She reaches out her hands to the poor, and extends her arms to the needy. 30 Charm is deceptive and beauty fleeting; the woman who fears the LORD is to be praised. 31 Give her a reward of her labors, and let her works praise her at the city gates.
P S A L M
Psalm 128:1-2, 3, 4-5
R: Blessed are those who fear the Lord.
1 Blessed are you who fear the LORD, who walk in his ways! 2 For you shall eat the fruit of your handiwork; happy shall you be, and favored. (R) 3 Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine in the recesses of your home; your children like olive plants around your table. (R) 4 Behold, thus is the man blessed who fears the LORD. 5 The LORD bless you from Zion may you see the prosperity of Jerusalem all the days of your life. (R)
We do not know when our time will come. It does not matter who we are or what connections we have. The only safe preparation for Judgment Day is to be ready for it NOW! In this way, if something unexpected should happen then, we will be prepared. There is no time for regrets in the face of something that is out of our control. While we still have the ability to choose what we do and how we do it, let us pray for the grace to choose well and prepare well for the Day we know will eventually come to us all.
1 Thessalonians 5:1-6
1 Concerning times and seasons, brothers, you have no need for anything to be written to you. 2 For you yourselves know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief at night. 3 When people are saying, “Peace and security,” then sudden disaster comes upon them, like labor pains upon a pregnant woman, and they will not escape. 4 But you, brothers, are not in darkness, for that day to overtake you like a thief. 5 For all of you are children of the light and children of the day. We are not of the night or of darkness. 6 Therefore, let us not sleep as the rest do, but let us stay alert and sober.
G O S P E L
This simple parable gives us cause to reflect on our lives from childhood to the present. How well have we used the gifts and talents God has given us? Have we used them just for our own gain or to help others as well? Are there ways we can improve our use of them now? If so, how are we going to do that? Eternal life is a big reward when you think about it. It is probably not worth messing around with our responses
here too much!
14 Jesus told his disciples this parable: “A man who was going on a journey called in his servants and entrusted his possessions to them. 15 To one he gave five talents; to another, two; to a third, one — to each according to his ability. Then he went away. Immediately 16 the one who received five talents went and traded with them, and made another five. 17 Likewise, the one who received two made another two. 18 But the man who received one went off and dug a hole in the ground and buried his master’s money. 19 After a long time the master of those servants came back and settled accounts with them. 20 The one who had received five talents came forward bringing the additional five. He said, ‘Master, you gave me five talents. See, I have made five more.’ 21 His master said to him, ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. Since you were faithful in small matters, I will give you great responsibilities. Come, share your master’s joy.’ 22 Then the one who had received two talents also came forward and said, ‘Master, you gave me two talents. See, I have made two more.’ 23 His master said to him, ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. Since you were faithful in small matters, I will give you great responsibilities. Come, share your master’s joy.’ 24 Then the one who had received the one talent came forward and said, ‘Master, I knew you were a demanding person, harvesting where you did not plant and gathering where you did not scatter; 25 so out of fear I went off and buried your talent in the ground. Here it is back.’ 26 His master said to him in reply, ‘You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I did not plant and gather where I did not scatter? 27 Should you not then have put my money in the bank so that I could have got it back with interest on my return? 28 Now then! Take the talent from him and give it to the one with ten. 29 For to everyone who has, more will be given and he will grow rich; but from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away. 30 And throw this useless servant into the darkness outside, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.’”
think: We should all be seeking perfection under the grace and guidance of the Holy Spirit.
God’s special verse/thought for me today________________
T O D A Y ’ S BLESSING LIST
Thank You Lord for: ____________________________________
READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR Jeremiah 31-34
My weekly time with God
THANK YOU LIST
Things to be grateful for from the past week
Things to ask God for in the coming week
Most important word God told me this week
NOTHING EVIL, BUT NOTHING GOOD, TOO
The twenty-fifth chapter of the Gospel of Matthew is divided into three parables. The first is the Parable of the 10 Virgins. The second is the Parable of the Talents. And the third is the Parable of the Last Judgment. Evidently, this chapter reminds us of three things: first, that the Lord Jesus will come again at the end of time; second, that we shall give an accounting of our lives to the Lord when He comes again on the Last Day; and third, that the Lord will judge us according to our deeds.
But what seems to be striking about these three parables is that those who are condemned are not explicitly described as wicked, immoral, sinful people. The five virgins in the first parable are simply foolish. The third servant in the parable today, who goes off after being entrusted with one talent by his master and digs a hole on the ground where he buried the talent, is simply lazy and afraid of his master. And in the Parable of the Last Judgment, it is very clear that the focus is not on the bad deeds committed but on the good deeds comitted.
We may ask of today’s parable, “What immoral thing did the third servant do to deserve the punishment he got from his master? The answer is clear: nothing. No, burying his talent under the ground for safekeeping is not sinful. The problem is that he also did nothing good. For fear of his master, the servant failed to do the good he was supposed to do: invest the talent entrusted to him. The message relative to the final judgment is clear: we shall be judged not only on the merits of what we do but also on the basis of what we fail or refuse to do.
There are two kinds of sin — the sin of commission, where we actually do something evil, and the other is the sin of omission, where we omit doing the good we’re supposed to do. Salvation is not merely a matter of avoiding evil; it is also very much a matter of doing good.
Let us avoid doing evil. But let us not forget doing good. If we fear committing sin, should we not also be equally, if not more, afraid of omitting good? Fr. Bobby Titco
We shall be judged not only on the merits of what we do but also on the basis of what we fail or refuse to do.
Lord, grant me the joy of doing the good that I am supposed to do. Instill upon me the horror of doing what I am not supposed to do. And show me the difference between the two. Amen.
St. Gertude, virgin, pray for us.
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