28th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Oct 10, 2021

ONE THING !

How hard it is to enter the kingdom of God? – Is not the first question.

Our first question to answer is… Do “I” want…eternal life?

If YES,…then what do ‘I’ NEED to do…to obtain eternal life?

 

You just don’t get it, Jesus . . .Jesus, you just don’t get it.”

OR…is it the rich young man who doesn’t get it?

Listen carefully to what Jesus says in today’s Gospel:

Jesus doesn’t condemn wealth and possessions as evil in themselves —

what is evil is when the pursuit of wealth and riches

displaces God as the center of our lives,

when material wealth becomes the focus of our existence,

when what we own…owns us.

 

Given the choice between the life of God and

the life of materialism, the young man opts for the latter.

 

May we possess the faith…to center our lives on the things of God,

to embrace the “wisdom and prudence” we heard from our first reading,

to realize that the things we have are not an end in themselves

but the means for living lives…of meaning and purpose

and re-creating our world in the justice and peace of God.

 

 

Our first reading Solomon praises WISDOM

as more valuable than power or riches.

The Psalm considers the preciousness of our time on this earth

and is a call to God for His support.

The passage from the Letter to the Hebrews

makes the focus…God’s Word, the scriptures.

In the Gospel, Jesus asks…that we are more than good;

Jesus asks that we provide support for each other.

 

The passage begins with the story of a man

who is attached to his wealth and

continues with Jesus’ warning against the false sense

of security that wealth can create.

 

LOVING GOD IS NOT ENOUGH

“Jesus looked at him with love and told him,

There is one thing more you must do.”

 

The Lord’s will…’IS NOT’ only that we love Him but that we love Him

with all our hearts, all our souls, all our strength, and all our minds.

 

It is relatively easy to give ninety-five percent MAYBE even

ninety-eight percent, of our lives to the Lord.

 

The great decision is about giving that last percent or two of our lives to God.

That last percent is OUR’ ‘ALL’, the “one thing more we must do.

 

But for this particular man who was looking for eternal life,

possessions were the “One Thing” which kept him from perfect generosity.

 

Jesus’ command: “Give it upTHEN…follow me.”

 

We do not know…if in history of salvation Jesus

ever said these words to anyone else.

 

His advice for you and me may NOT

be to give up all our possessions as a condition of following him.

 

But surely for each of us there is still the “One Thing Lacking”,

 

The one thing that keeps you and me from perfect generosity.

Thru prayer, let Jesus…tell you today

WHAT your obstacle ‘IS’ and ‘HOW’ to give it up.

 

Your ‘one thing more’ may be to “sell what you have and give to the poor”

Other examples of “one thing more” are:

  • Forgiving,  loving an enemy,
  • admitting an addiction and taking it to the Lord,
  • repenting and going to Confession,
  • starting to evangelize, tithing,
  • serving and washing the feet of others,
  • saying “yes” to a particular vocation

 

 

 

At this moment, Jesus is looking at you with love.

Give Him the “one thing more.”

Give Him all your love.

 

Certainly, Jesus says to each of us,

“All that you have”I” have given you,…because I love you.

BUT the gift is not justfor you.

 

It is to be shared with others as ‘I’ have shared with you.

LET IT GO.  GIVE IT UP. 

OPEN YOUR HAND.     OPEN YOUR HEART.

 

Share with others your wisdom, your wealth,

And your willingness to LOVE.

SEEMS IMPOSSIBLE?  à    Maybe.

But REMEMBER, ‘ALL’ things are possible for GOD.

 

Christ is calling the young man and us…to Discipleship.

This discipleship is not about the basics,

or even about WHAT we have or don’t have.

It is about what GOD does.

 

SALVATION isn’t about ‘ME’, a prize to be earned by my good works,

for none of us can earn that.

It is a gift for us ALL,

earned by Christ, who put himself into our hands

and let go of His breath.

 

To grasp how great this gift is…

I need to practice it myself;

to let go of even the things

that seem as necessary as breathing.

 

What is the WEALTH ‘I’ cling to?

It may be my material possessions

but also consider social standing,

sense of accomplishment,

OR the race to be #1.

 

 

“Am” ‘I’ aware of those unseen; who make my life easier??

 

When do ‘I’ stop to wonder who has picked

the vegetables and fruits that I buy at the grocery store? 

Are they paid enough to eat?

Do they have access to education,

to a safe place to live, or clean water to drink?

 

It seems an impossible tangle,

 

And like the young man in Mark’s gospel, ‘I’ am tempted to turn away,

saddened at what I cannot separate myself from.  

 

I am reminded of St. Ignatius’ Spiritual Exercises

that rather than focusing on where we stand

in terms of health, riches, honor, and longevity,

we should instead

focus on the end (or purpose) for which we are here.

Help me Jesus, recognize and appreciate the support that YOU provide.
Strengthen my will…in providing support to those

who are in my sphere of influence.
Guide me…in wisely investing the time that I have on this earth.

 

 

“There is one thing more you must do.”

The key to obeying all the Lord’s commands

is to rely on His grace and NOT on ‘OUR’ strength.

 

 

 

 

 

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