Fall in Love, Stay in Love
Justin Paskert, Seminarian
At first appearance this gospel passage seems to be counter intuitive. Here we have Jesus telling us about a Master who catches his dishonest steward and is going to fire him. So in response the steward continues to act dishonestly, but then is commended for it. It almost seems like the point of the story is to act with cunning and be shrew, but it is not until we get to then of the gospel passage that we see the true point of the parable. “You cannot serve both God and Mammon.”
This simple statement points out the fact that we will always work towards what we want, what we love. If we love money then that is the goal that all our actions work towards. If we love ourselves then everything we do will be to serve ourselves. It is impossible to live our lives without something being our god. It is either an object, ourselves, another person, or the true God. Once we know what we want then everything we do will be ordered to that goal.
One of the messages of this gospel, and what I would invite you to reflect on is what or who do you love? What is the deepest desire of your heart? Allow yourself to experience it again. I can already tell you what that is, whether you know it our not. It is intimacy with your God because he is the one who made you and placed that desire in your heart. He is so in love with us and all he is asking is that we love Him in return. So let us take time to not only know that fact, but to get in touch with that desire in our heart and be aware once again of our need for Him.
If we recognize that we have other gods in our life, that we have been serving Mammon, then bring that contrition to confession. If we experience fear around that deep part of our heart, then put into words your fear. A fear of change could be that we are afraid that we will lose ourselves if we change our lives. Bring that fear to your prayer and allow the Lord to speak words of hope and trust to that fear. Perhaps today we are being invited to make a change in our actions that will bring us closer to the one we love.
I want to leave you with a quote from Fr. Pedro Arrupe, S.J. who states this very beautifully:
Nothing is more practical that finding God, that is, than falling in love in a quite absolute, final way. What you are in love with, what seizes your imagination, will affect everything. It will decide what will get you out of bed in the morning, what you will do with your evenings, how you will spend your weekends, what you read, who you know, what breaks your heart, and what amazes you with joy and gratitude.
Fall in love, stay in love, and it will decide everything.