Message From Father Maurer
The Lord says: my plans for you are peace and not disaster; when you call on me, I will listen to you and I will bring you back to the place from which I exiled you. Jeremiah 29:11,12,14
There is an image from the first Lord of the Rings movie that sticks with me fairly vividly – it is that of the normally lovable character of Bilbo when he talks about his 'precious'. It's the one ring, the innocent looking piece of jewelry that is embued with great power and a terrible evil. Whenever he talks about it, he gets a wild-eyed look, his words become crass and crude and even his tone is snarling and defensive. The scene where this lovable person transforms into this ugliness is startling.
The Gospel today talks about the ugly side of possessions, particularly 'talents' or money.
It's not always possessiveness that drives us around these things. Sometimes it's a desire for security and safety, a fear of an unknown future. But whatever the source, we too may find ourselves transformed from the good person we try to be into something else.
Contrast this with the first reading today, which describes the gift of a worthy wife - who's virtues we are all encouraged to imitate. In fact, the church is consistently named the Bride of Christ.
May we ask God's help and cherishing His gifts without possessiveness, using them for his glory and the good of all.