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Archive for October, 2009

Twenty-Eighth Sunday of Ordinary Time (B) Homily

Posted by frmac on October 10, 2009

Wisdom 7: 7-11; Psalm 90; Hebrews 4: 12-13; Mark 10: 17-30

Canadian Thanksgiving

This weekend we focus on our gifts and blessings. It is the October weekend we celebrate each year in Canada, as the leaves turn glorious shades of red and gold, and we prepare to settle into the long cold Canadian winter. Sometimes the very thought of winter detracts from our gratefulness, and we have to remind ourselves, and one another of our many blessings. Gratefulness and thankfulness come more easily to some than to others. Much depends on our life’s circumstances (health, family, job, etc…) But no matter how bad things are, and sometimes they can be very bad, there is always something to be grateful for. We often put this another way by saying: “Things could be worse.”

A few minutes ago we heard our first reader read these words: “I called on God, and the spirit of wisdom came to me. I preferred her (wisdom) to sceptres and thrones, and I accounted wealth as nothing in comparison with her. Neither did I like to her (wisdom) any priceless gem because all gold is but a little sand in her sight, and silver will be accounted as clay before her. I lover her more that health and beauty — all good things came to me along with her (wisdom).

If there is one thing that we should pray for on this weekend of thankfulness is wisdom, for without wisdom life can become unbearable – a real drag – meaningless – a string of wrong choices, actions, and attitudes. Without wisdom, it becomes very, very hard to be thankful!

In a way this is what the young man is asking Jesus for when he asked what more he could do to inherit eternal life? He had kept all the commandments, but something was missing, and he knew it. But, he couldn’t figure out what it was! He needed wisdom!

 

Jesus, looking at him loved him and said, “You lack one thing; go, sell what you own, and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me.” What an invitation – just imagine who this young man might have become? The Gospel writer, Mark, tells us the young man was shocked and he left grieving – it was just too much to ask – but it was the one thing that was getting in his way to true happiness and holiness.

Numerous spiritual writers tell us that ‘letting go’ is something that we must learn to do in life. This young man was too attached to his material wealth. In our own lives we need wisdom to recognize those things that are hampering our own spiritual journey. What situations and things do we need to let go of in our life? Here are a few we might consider, but there are hundreds, if not thousands: addiction, anger, grief, money, people, presumptions, guilt, certain activities, power, pride, grudges, etc.? The first step to letting go is recognizing what is getting in our way, and for this we need wisdom. Then we need the courage, strength, and God’s grace to let go, or ask for help in doing so. No, not easy – not easy at all – and the rich young man just couldn’t do it!

As we celebrate Eucharist this thanksgiving Sunday let us pray a prayer of gratitude and thankfulness for gifts and blessings received and yet to come. But also, let us remember to pray for the priceless gift of wisdom that is more precious than silver and gold. And, remembering the story of the rich young man in the Gospel, let us pray for the courage  and God’s grace to let go of those things that are hampering our spiritual growth and happiness. Yes, Let us pray for Wisdom, and the gift of ‘Letting Go’.

God Bless and Happy Thanksgiving.

Fr. Bob

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