Sunday, August 7, 2016

Looking Ahead

Father Perry D. Leiker, pastor
By Father Perry D. Leiker, pastor 

Quote of the Week: “What we love we shall grow to resemble.” — St. Bernard of Clairvaux.

Jesus speaks about the deepest themes of faith and trust.

Today’s Gospel is placed in the broader context of references to Moses and the Passover (an evening of complete trust and confidence in the saving power of God).

Abraham was willing to sacrifice his only son to God simply because of the promises God had made to him. This faith, trust and confidence is the stuff of which Jesus speaks in the Gospels.

Because of such trust, there is no room for fear. Jesus says that: “your Father is pleased to give you the kingdom. Sell your belongings and give alms.”

This place (interior) in which Jesus invites us to welcome the kingdom of God, places us in a completely different frame of mind and heart. When we trust and when we know with all our heart and soul that the promises of God are always good, and that his love is everlasting, we live with a generosity of heart that makes us new and alive.

Here, one discovers the power of loving, serving, giving, receiving, forgiving, compassion and making peace. Here, one discovers God in all and all in God.

Here, one discovers that being ready is being open and, that in openness and readiness, the kingdom is alive and powerful.

In this sense of alert openness to God here and now, Jesus uses a very ordinary example of the only acceptable attitude for a servant of a household.

The master is away and will return at a time that no one knows. The role of the servant is to be ready, waiting, alert, and up to serving the master’s every need. Any servant should know that this is the only acceptable attitude.

But Jesus says more. He speaks about the reward given to a servant ready and alert: the master will wait on him. He speaks about the blessing of a house not being broken into because the master was ready; such a blessing belongs to the servant who is ready and alert.

He finally tells about the beating given to a servant knowledgeable of the master’s will and a servant equally ignorant of it – both of whom do NOT do his will. Both will be beaten, but the first worst than the last. But the servant who is ready and alert AND doing the will of the master will be blessed.

The context of deep faith and trust – that of Moses, the ancients, and Abraham – reveals the proper attitude of those who are capable and desirous of experiencing the kingdom of God.

Be alert! Be ready! Be a true servant! Believe in God’s constant love and faithful promises!

Know what the treasure is, where the treasure is, and how to be open to the treasure, for this is an inexhaustible treasure “that no thief can reach nor moth destroy.”

Father Perry D. Leiker is pastor of St. Bernard Church. Reach him at (323) 255-6142, Ext. 112; email perry.leiker@gmail.com. Follow Father Perry on Twitter: @MrDeano76.

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