Aug 11 2019 Reflection
Sunday 11 August 2019
First Reading: WIS 18:6-9
Blessed the people the Lord has chosen to be his own.
PS 33:1, 12, 18-19, 20-22
Second Reading: HEB 11:1-2, 8-19
Gospel Reading: LK 12:32-48
Today’s Note: Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Jesus said to his disciples:
“Do not be afraid any longer, little flock,
for your Father is pleased to give you the kingdom.
Sell your belongings and give alms.
Provide money bags for yourselves that do not wear out,
an inexhaustible treasure in heaven
that no thief can reach nor moth destroy.
For where your treasure is, there also will your heart be.
“Gird your loins and light your lamps
and be like servants who await their master’s return from a wedding,
ready to open immediately when he comes and knocks.
Blessed are those servants
whom the master finds vigilant on his arrival.
Amen, I say to you, he will gird himself,
have them recline at table, and proceed to wait on them.
And should he come in the second or third watch
and find them prepared in this way,
blessed are those servants.
Be sure of this:
if the master of the house had known the hour
when the thief was coming,
he would not have let his house be broken into.
You also must be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect,
the Son of Man will come.”
Then Peter said,
“Lord, is this parable meant for us or for everyone?”
And the Lord replied,
“Who, then, is the faithful and prudent steward
whom the master will put in charge of his servants
to distribute the food allowance at the proper time?
Blessed is that servant whom his master on arrival finds doing so.
Truly, I say to you, the master will put the servant
in charge of all his property.
But if that servant says to himself,
‘My master is delayed in coming,’
and begins to beat the menservants and the maidservants,
to eat and drink and get drunk,
then that servant’s master will come
on an unexpected day and at an unknown hour
and will punish the servant severely
and assign him a place with the unfaithful.
That servant who knew his master’s will
but did not make preparations nor act in accord with his will
shall be beaten severely;
and the servant who was ignorant of his master’s will
but acted in a way deserving of a severe beating
shall be beaten only lightly.
Much will be required of the person entrusted with much,
and still more will be demanded of the person entrusted with more.”
Be . . . ready. (Luke 12:36)
Are you ready? The servants in today’s Gospel are—lamps lit, loins girt, waiting for their master’s knock at the door. They know he will come sooner or later, so they don’t sit around. They make preparations, stay awake, and keep doing what they know they need to do to prepare.
What a good analogy for our life of faith! Faith isn’t just believing something abstract. It’s about acting on what you believe. It’s about taking the necessary steps that flow from your belief. It’s a theme that’s repeated in all of today’s readings: being ready, looking forward with vigilance, waiting with faith. Faith is anything but passive.
The Israelites in the first reading listened to God’s direction and prepared the Passover as they waited for their deliverance. Abraham, in the second reading, left his homeland and struck out for the Promised Land, though he didn’t even know where it was! They held onto their hope that God would be true to his promises.
You can do that too. You know that you have a loving Father, so you can trust that your active waiting will not be in vain. You probably already have a sense about what you could do—so do it!
As you’re practicing this active waiting, remember that you’re not alone. You’re being supported by all the saints and holy people who have eagerly waited for God as well. You have the Holy Spirit living in you to remind you that God is not trying to catch you off guard; he’s eager to celebrate with you and bless you.
If you need encouragement, look at the surprising way the master blesses his servants in the Gospel: he puts on an apron and serves them. He even goes so far as to put his faithful servant in charge of all his property. Like this master, God our Father wants to share his blessings with all his servants. He is pleased to give them—and us—the kingdom.
“Lord, I believe you are good and faithful to your promises. Help me to be ready for you.”