Saturday, November 15, 2014


By Rev. Joe McCloskey, SJ

Charm is deceptive and beauty fleeting; the woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.  Acclaim her for the work of her hands, and let her deeds praise her at the city gates.  Proverbs 31:30-31

For to everyone who has, more will be given and he will grow rich; but from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away.  Matthew 25:29

How we use our talents for the sake of the Lord is a good measure of our piety.  In our gospel, if you did not know better, the talent appears a small sum of money.  In reality it was a great deal of money.  What is rewarded is not how much money was made but rather how well we use our talents.  Our talents in the gospel story are a responsibility.  The one who buried his talent because it seemed so little in comparison to the ones who had gotten more captures in a powerful way what happens in life.  Piety teaches us that there is no need to be jealous because we are judged not on how many talents we have, but rather on how well we use our talents.  Our piety shows itself in how we live our lives in imitation of what attracts us to Christ.  Christ emptied himself out of his use of his Godness so that he could be just like us.  How we try to be like him is our piety.

How we come to love and appreciate the talents God has given us is how we discover our identity before God.  How we study the possibilities around us as to what we can do is how we claim an identity before God.  Our study of the past reveals to us what we did not think ourselves capable of doing.  We learn by our study the need of trusting God.  We know that we will not be tempted beyond our talents.  We learn to let go and let God work in our lives.

Our talents are uncovered by our attempting to do what needs doing around us.  We put our talents to work in meeting the needs of our world.  We live up to our job responsibility and discover we have so much more to give.  Gradually we discover it is not what we are doing that matters so much as the love with which we do what we can.  There is a God meaning in all we do out of love because God is where there is love.  We offer our work as extensions of the ministry of Christ.  Our life gradually becomes the statement of how much God loves our world, as we are a part of God’s love.  The more we try to do in his name, the more he gives us to work with and to grow.  We enter into the joy of our God by growing in his work and sharing the Good News of Salvation.  

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