This Sunday is the Twenty-fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time. The readings are from Amos 8:4-7; Psalm 113:1-2, 4-8; 1 Timothy 2:1-8; and Luke 16:1-13.
A few summers ago, I jumped on the bandwagon and read The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo. And while there are things that I loved about the “KonMari Method” of organizing (her method of folding clothes and organizing your dresser drawers IS kind of life-changing), I don’t know if I could adopt everything she prescribes. However, the older I get, the more I appreciate the idea of simplifying my home and possessions. A few months after reading that book, I discovered a “home examen,” or a method of prayer where you discern along with the Lord what your home should be. It helps you clear out things from all the rooms in your house that keep it from being what God desires for your home and your life. I have to admit, all the materials for this are still sitting on my dining room table, but I am really excited to tackle it (slowly) this Advent.
This Sunday’s Gospel contains the well-known line: “No servant can serve two masters. He will either hate one and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and mammon” (Luke 16:13). It goes without saying that most of us understand the need to own things in today’s world. We need money, we need to own a car, we need to buy clothes and food and even things for recreation. However, as Christians, we also need to understand that these things are not an end in and of themselves. They are gifts and tools given to us by God for the service of Him and our families and others. Are there “things” you are holding on to so tightly that they are keeping you from God and what He wills for you? Bring this to prayer to discern what is “good and pleasing to God our savior” for a “quiet and tranquil life in all devotion and dignity” (1 Tim. 2:2-3).