First Reading: Ezk 24:15-24; Psalm: Deut 32. R. v. 18b; Gospel: Mt 19: 16-22
RISING ABOVE POSSESSION TO GENEROSITY
BY FR VALENTINE NNAMDI EGBUONU, MSP
The rich man in the gospel of today went away sad when Jesus asked him to sell all he had and then come and follow him. This was because he loved his wealth more than any other thing and was not ready to let go of them. Jesus knew this and wanted to help him out but obviously he was deeply attached to his wealth and never wanted to lose any of them.
This rich man claimed to have kept all the commandments but failed to give. And it was for this reason that Jesus said to him: “You lack one thing” which is generosity. So Jesus asked him to go and give to the poor. The refusal of this rich man to this command goes against the entire commandment of love of God and neighbour because he loved his wealth more than God which is idolatry. And by refusing to give to those in need, he failed in the love of neighbour also. So by this action he betrayed his claim of truly keeping all the commandments.
Jesus is teaching us today that giving is also a sign of love. And there is nothing as beautiful as following the teachings of Jesus for it is the way to eternal salvation. Our docility to this message of Jesus that calls us to be generous is a powerful weapon capable of breaking the walls of selfishness which separates us from God and neighbour. So we can ask Jesus today to soften our hearts and fill it with charity and mercy. As the scripture teaches, one of the ways we can build treasures for ourselves in heaven is through love and generous giving. Our riches should not blind us to this divine principle of salvation.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY
Lord Jesus, help us to be charitable and kind. Amen