Daily Reflection
September 20th, 1999
Amy Marie Haddad
Pharmaceutical & Administrative Sciences
Ezra 1:1-6
Luke 8:16-18 

There is a program on educational television called “Antiques Roadshow” on which average people from around the country are encouraged to bring collectibles, antiques, and family treasures to a variety of expert appraisers who tell them what the item would be worth at an auction or to a collector should they choose to sell.  The people stand in line holding old shopping bags or clutching worn Bloomingdale’s  boxes filled with ragged bath towels to protect great-grandmother’s legacy.  At first glance to the untrained eye,  the dusty, cobweb covered paintings, vases and knickknacks look like so much junk.  Perhaps the trash can really was the appropriate place for most of these things.

The choicest objects are examined and discussed on camera as the people tell the story of how they came to acquire the object.  Most of the items are handed down from generation to generation.  Families often forget about these objects and  they end up hidden away at the back of the china closet or in a dresser drawer so as not to be broken.  On the contrary, real treasures are proudly displayed.  It is fascinating to watch the expression on the owner’s face as a real jewel is revealed by the appraiser.   For example, the small, beat-up watercolor in the broken frame is really an early Dutch Impressionist’s work worth over $8,000.  The expert’s valuation dramatically changes the owner’s appreciation of the item.  Surprisingly, most owner’s say that they are not going to sell the item, but will reserve a place of pride in their homes for it.

The scripture readings for today made me think of this program for a variety of reasons.  In the Book of Ezra, the people of the Lord who went to Jerusalem are called upon to build the temple of the Lord.  All people are called upon to assist in whatever way they can, “. . . with silver, gold, goods and cattle, with free will offerings for the house of God in Jerusalem.”  I envision the people of God who were willing to offer their goods to the cause of building the house of the Lord like the people in line at the Antiques Roadshow, bringing what they have to offer.

In the reading from the gospel according to Luke, Jesus tells the crowd that “No one lights a lamp and puts it under a bushel basket or under a bed. . .”  The Good News of salvation should not be hidden away.  Since we have been blessed, God expects much from us.  This includes sharing the joy of Christ’s love.  I do not think I am alone among Catholics in my reticence about my faith.  I am somewhat shy about letting others know what my faith means to me.  Yet, we are called to let our light shine for all to see.  The individuals at the Antiques Roadshow need to be told the value of their objects.  We are told by the most expert appraiser,  Jesus Christ, of the value of His love and salvation.  So, let us dust off the gifts that we have tucked away for safe-keeping and proudly display the infinite worth of God’s love.

Click on the link below to send an e-mail response
to the writer of this reflection.
Online Ministries 
Home Page
for Sunday
Online Retreat
Daily Readings Texts 
from the 
New American Bible
Daily Readings Texts 
from the 
RSV Bible
Spirituality Links
Saint of the Day
Collaborative Ministry Office  
Home Page
University Ministry 
Home Page
Collaborative Ministry Office Guestbook