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Daily Mass Reflections - 10/22

Updated on October 20, 2021

“Take care to guard against all greed, for though one may be rich, life does not consist of possessions.” ~ Luke 12:14

We are reminded of the fleeting nature of our world and the possessions that exist within it in today’s Gospel (Luke 12:13-21), wherein Jesus recites the parable of the wealthy harvester. This was a man so successful in his chosen career that he had to tear down his barns and build bigger ones in order to store the bountiful harvest which his land produced. And then, just like that, he dies suddenly one evening. Jesus wonders aloud “...and of these things that you have prepared? To whom will they belong?”

As the old expression goes, “You never see a U-Haul hitched to the back of a hearse.” Was this man also rich in what matters to God? I certainly hope so.

“Fall in love with Jesus Christ, to live his very life, so that our world might have life in the light of the Gospel.” These are the words of the man whose Feast Day we celebrate today, Saint John Paul II. This was a man steeped in love, compassion, mercy, and unrelenting forgiveness. These virtues are the treasures we must seek to store up, and the opportunities to do so exist all around us. Devoting time and financial resources to charitable organizations, attending Mass as often as possible, partaking of the Sacraments, praying the Rosary and spending quiet time in Eucharistic Adoration are merely a few ways in which we can pursue these eternal graces that Saint John Paul II possessed.

Saint Paul reminds us today (Ephesians 2:1-10) that it is by God’s Grace that we are saved, rescued from our fallen ways as “children of wrath.” The battle rages on however, and without the abundant graces of God poured out upon us through Jesus’ death and resurrection coupled with the Holy Spirit, we could and most definitely would revert back to our transgressions and sinful ways.

In his Daily Gospel Reflection, Bishop Barron likens the transient pleasures of our world to that of “a gorgeous firework that bursts open like a giant flower and then, in the twinkling of an eye, is gone forever.” He goes on to explain that “everything is haunted by nonbeing. Everything, finally, is a bubble.”

But this is in no way meant to sadden us or to fill us with discouragement or even anxiety. By no means is it to imply that our time here on earth is meaningless or even unimportant. Everything in our lives, from the minutia to the monumental, is supremely important to our loving God. It is simply meant to redirect our attention precisely to the things that are "above," to the eternal landscape of God’s Heavenly Paradise. Author Byron Rizzo once said “The human in the long run is always momentary.” Not so for our God, who in his might and splendor, must be our every moment’s desire.

Saint John Paul II, pray for us….


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