Reflections from October 11 Gospel
When the rich man in today’s Gospel first approached Jesus, he was excited, optimistic, and confident. We know this because he “ran up” to the Lord and “knelt down before him.” He may have been quite proud of himself when he was able to say about the commandments, “all of these I have observed from my youth.” The fellow probably thought his work was done. But Jesus knew this man better than he knew himself.
When Jesus challenged him to become detached from his wealth—to sell his things and give to the poor—it was too much. The man left Jesus. His excitement and confidence were gone, and he was sad. What are we clinging to that prevents us from accepting Jesus’ invitation? For some of us it may be wealth or possessions, for others the quest for success or the desire for popularity. Or it may be entirely different. God knows, and deep down we do too. Today, Jesus is calling us to love him with our whole heart, not just a comfortable percentage. It may seem too much to give, but this faithful surrender is the path to happiness, both now and in the life to come.
Questions of the Week
What are some effective ways Christians can use their wealth to help the poor?
Why do you think it is so easy to value health and beauty over wisdom and prudence?
How do you react to the idea that “we must render an account” of ourselves to God?