FRIDAY OF THE THIRTY-FIRST WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME NOVEMBER 8, 2019
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke 16:1-8
Jesus said to his disciples, "A rich man had a steward who was reported to him for squandering his property. He summoned him and said, 'What is this I hear about you? Prepare a full account of your stewardship, because you can no longer be my steward.' The steward said to himself, 'What shall I do, now that my master is taking the position of steward away from me? I am not strong enough to dig and I am ashamed to beg. I know what I shall do so that, when I am removed from the stewardship, they may welcome me into their homes.' He called in his master's debtors one by one. To the first he said, 'How much do you owe my master?' He replied, 'One hundred measures of olive oil.' He said to him, 'Here is your promissory note. Sit down and quickly write one for fifty.' Then to another he said, 'And you, how much do you owe?' He replied, 'One hundred measures of wheat.' He said to him, 'Here is your promissory note; write one for eighty.' And the master commended that dishonest steward for acting prudently. For the children of this world are more prudent in dealing with their own generation than the children of light."
REFLECTION: "What shall I do...."
When we make mistakes, or realize that the life we are living is never going to take us or our family to God, we look beyond the present and start seeing how we can undo or fix up the mistakes. We change courses if the road we have taken is dead wrong. In today's Gospel passage, God commends the shrewd steward for changing.
The shrewd (astute, sharp thinking) steward found himself in such a pickle. He was caught by his master of squandering his property and was fired. He, most likely, was overcharging the tenants and taking the overcharge for his commission. He found himself in a financial or economic crisis as he had no other job he could or wanted to perform. So he made deals with the debtors, taking half of what was owed and forgiving the rest of the debt. The steward, in cutting this deal, made the master look benevolent and the debtors happy. The steward avoided the temporal consequences of his poor decisions.
When we find ourselves in a spiritual crisis, we either can continue on that road to destruction or we can become a new creation, letting the old pass away and become new under the love of God.
We can, through prayer and fasting, the right amount of foresight and energy and the strong desire to let the Holy Spirit take over, avoid a spiritual crisis with eternal consequences.
We can be shrewd stewards for not only ourselves but for others. "What shall I do...." With the love of the Lord in our hearts, pray and fast for those who are on the wrong path, encourage the addict to seek rehab or help the unresourceful sinner out of their quagmire into a life filled with love. Most important, God will see this love we have for one another and we will hear His words commending us.
Want to be refreshed in our love for God and priests? Consider attending the first PAPA annual conference on December 6-8th, 2019. See flyers and brochures for more information!!