THE WORD BECAME FLESH
Friday of the Eleventh week in Ordinary Time, 2021
2Cor 11:18, 21b-30
Your treasure and your heart
Dear friends in Christ, the health of your heart and your general well-being are often tied to your treasure. There are many people who have died suddenly of heart failures because what they treasure has been taken away from them. The loss of jobs, of loved ones, sometimes, the very thought of losing it in future is enough to cause some people health problems and high blood pressure.
Today’s Gospel passage (Matthew 6: 19-23) are the words of Jesus to his disciples to be careful on how they deal with the things of this world. “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven…For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” A priest told a story of how he went to see a man on his sick bed in the hospital. Even when he knew he was dying, his concern was about his wealth and properties and how his children will administer his estate after him. He died a sad man because he did not have time to enjoy his wealth though he lived to eighty. Our faith teaches us to be mindful of how we deal with temporal things and be more concerned about the things that are eternal.
In the first reading (2 Corinthians 11:18, 21b-30) Paul by his own life gives us a great example of how to commit oneself to eternal things. He gives an account of his ordeals on the journeys he undertook for the spread of the gospel. This was because of others who were boasting about worldly achievements. “Since many boast of worldly things, I too will boast. Whatever anyone dares to boast of, I am speaking as a fool—I also dare to boast of that.” He went on to list what he boasts about—his labours for the gospel, his imprisonments, his countless beatings to near death, the times he has been stoned, suffered ship-wrecks and adrift on the sea. The dangers he faced traveling through dangerous territories, his many days of hunger and thirst and exposure to the elements. All of these for the gospel. What worries him most however is not what he has achieved, he wants to boast of his weaknesses because his strength comes from God. “Apart from other things, there is a daily pressure upon me of my anxiety for all the churches. Who is weak, and I am not weak? Who is made to fall, and I am not indignant? If I must boast, I will boast of the things that show my weakness.”
Where is your treasure? What is it you treasure? What is the object of your boast—earthly or heavenly things? Lay up treasures in heaven and you will have a lot to boast of for eternity.
Let us pray: O God, you have given us life to treasure, help us to use our time on earth to lay up treasures that will last to eternity. Amen.