November 19, 2022
by Carol Zuegner
Creighton University's Department of Journalism, Media and Computing
click here for photo and information about the writer

Saturday of the Thirty-third Week in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 502

Revelation 11:4-12
Psalm 144:1, 2, 9-10
Luke 20:27-40

Praying Ordinary Time Weekly Guide for Daily Prayer

Today’s gospel from Luke caused me to reflect on my own image of Jesus as a man and on how my own house – my mind, my heart, my soul – sometimes resembles the temple area as a den of thieves. First, my own image of Jesus often is the man who seems serene and always forgiving. I believe he is always forgiving, but I think the world tested that serenity. That happens in other parts of the New Testament where he grows impatient with the apostles, frustrated with the Pharisees. Here he takes action to drive out those selling things. That’s it. Enough. These glimpses of Jesus as human, as frustrated and even angry, show me again the depth of love he has for us and the love we must extend to the people around us, even when we become impatient, frustrated or angry.   

When I read that familiar passage of turning the house of prayer into a den of thieves, it hit me that I also let thieves into my own house. I let the thieves of procrastination, indifference, excuses steal my best self, the self that wants to glorify and contribute to the kingdom of God here on earth. Instead, I fritter away time and energy on gossip, on social media. I am too tired to pray, yet I can watch one more episode of a cooking show I’ve likely seen before. I take responsibility; I know I am the thief. I know God wants me to relax, to enjoy time off. But I also know I have that responsibility to make choices that make use of my talents. I have the responsibility to my own house.

My prayer today is that I guard against the thieves of my time and talent, and that I do what I can to be a light.

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