Daily Reflection
November 14th, 1999
Larry Gillick, S.J.
Deglman Center for Ignatian Spirituality
Click here for a photo of and information on this writer.
The Thirty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time
Proverbs 31:10-13, 19-20, 30-31
Psalm 128:1-5
1 Thessalonians 5:1-6
Matthew 25:14-30

Today's first reading may sound as if it should be Mothers Day.  Wisdom is pictured as a "worthy wife."  The image reveals much more about the loving God than any concept of a classic spouse.

The gospel centers around a parable where a rich man gives varying amounts of money to three persons and each of them does something with that gift.  The one who buries the money for fear of the giver, has that amount taken away and given to the one who was given more in the first place.  This seems so strange, to those who have more, even more will be given and those who have little, even that will be taken away.  That doesn't sound just, or Christian at all.

"Where your heart is, there also is your treasure."  Wisdom is knowing where things come from, what they are for and where they are taking us.  Upon receiving a gift, we might think we know exactly what it is and how to use it.  A wise person takes time to reverence the gift and not assume full knowledge of it.  A wise person does not assume full awareness of why the gift was given in the first place. 

We are moved by today's readings to locate the real treasures of our lives.  What persons center our imaginations, plans, activities and hopes?  What personal gifts have been given and which ones, as of yet, have not been fully unwrapped.  What material objects float around the ponds of our lives?  For whom, and for what, do we take risks?  Fear of losing our gifts, fear of making mistakes, fear of the reactions of others can get in the way of sharing, displaying and growing in our lives and the lives of others. 

Real wisdom though, is knowing that we are so limited in our awareness and ability to see things as they really are that we either believe or pretend.  God is always at work, as pictured in the first reading, lovingly tending us.  Pretending is to assume that we can see and understand everything that happens.  Those who pretend bury the gift of faith.  Those who have faith do something with it.  This living faith is a wisdom that expects God's mystery to be glimpsed just a wee little bit and by risking faith, faith, or the vision to see more than meets the eye, increases.  Those who have faith then receive even more and those who bury their faith lessen their ability to receive more.  It is not about justice then, but receptivity.  Those who pretend don't need faith, those who have faith need even more.

We reflect on God's mysterious ways of dealing with our humanity.  If God made everything clear we would put God aside as a good benefactor.  Our limited wisdom settles on this, that God comes close enough to attract our attention, but not so close as to render our response as forced.  God does not play games with us though, our response is so sacred that God reverences our ways of knowing and trusting.  All the gifts we have are so many invitations to trust the Giver, who is always tending us as does a "worthy wife" tend those she loves.

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