What’s really important?
After reading today’s Scriptures, I have been thinking about this most of the week. I wish I could say it was always God, but let’s be honest, it isn’t. Some days, it is my schedule, my need to get something done, some errand I need to run, my need to do something charitable, my time especially, when I think it is being wasted, and my list continues.
What I notice in that list is the prevalence of the word, “I”. If I hear Jesus right, what is important is putting His Father first not me, no matter what. The parable is a striking reminder that if all the focus is me, even in ministry, then the barn I think I am filling for a rainy day is really a waste of my time. By putting Jesus first, then everything we are about reflects His life that was spent putting the mission of the Father before anything. He went to His Cross not to gain glory for himself, but to free you and me from death and sin. He embraced His suffering to show us how much we are loved. Even at that most profound moment, he even gave himself away in the mystery of the Eucharist and 2000 years later, we still experience it here at the altar of the Lord.
Even in parish life, we can get narrow sighted. We can focus on us and what we are about forgetting our call to do the mission of Jesus. Everything we do as a parish community should be for the honor and glory of God and not us. I think the challenge for all of us is to look beyond ourselves and to look to that Cross and remind ourselves that our life as a community of faith is because of the one who is there. Even after receiving Holy Communion, we need to go back to our pews and praise the God who we just received.
What gets in the way of accepting Jesus the center of our lives? Simply, I think our pride and our need to control everything. Our faith is a gift and not something to inflate our egos and make us better than anyone. Putting God first is true humility. Control is an illusion that we all fall into and the parable is the best example of that.
So, my brothers and sisters, I invite you to consider all week this simple question:
What is really important to you? Is it Jesus or you?