Grace to you!
In today's reflection, I focus on the Lord's message concerning treasures, wealth and materialism as recorded in the Gospel of Matthew 6: 19-23.
A man had asked a spiritual director how he would know what actually is his treasure, where his heart is. The spiritual director asked him to do a simple exercise for one week and come back with his charted notes.
May I share that exercise with you. Document, hour by hour, for at least four hours in a day, what thoughts or concerns preoccupy your mind. Do it consistently for one week and compare the chart. You will be surprised by the pattern that may emerge.
If the pattern rallies around things you eat, wear, your travels, your car, your home, your money or ways to make money, entertainment, etc., it may be suggestive of more materialistic concerns.
If the pattern builds around family, relationships, church or spiritual matters, it may be revealing of social concerns, faith or other higher values depending on how the chart is spread. It wouldn’t be a bad idea to do this exercise and see things for yourself.
Often, the culture we live in shapes our ways of doing things or looking at reality. This is understandable. Nevertheless, when the culture is built around things that don’t last, it could be a stumbling block to the spiritual life.
Consider, for instance, hanging out with people whose constant discussion is about their latest gadgets, latest cars, latest travels, their private boat or private jet, their beach home, their jewelry—all things that do not really make us who we are. If their flamboyancy doesn’t make you sick to your stomach, you may likely begin to copy what they do. Consumerism and materialism could be alluring to a weak heart and a consumerist culture breeds its kind.
Placing our hope in material things is building on sand. That’s precisely the message the Lord is drawing home to us through the segment of the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 6:19-23.
Know this: Net worth isn’t the same as person worth. Your material possessions are far and wide from your core value as a human being.
When we strive to build the lasting value, we are indeed orienting our minds in the right direction. We are filled with good thoughts. We are liberated. We witness the joy of the Lord. We are satisfied. Our hearts are rejuvenated also. Such a heart is solidly established on what endures, not what perishes.
What are your priorities? What do you consider your treasure? Remember, as the Lord said, “Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also” (Mt 6:21).
Praying for the grace of enduring satisfaction. Amen.
God love you. God bless you.
Fr. Maurice Emelu
[Friday, Week 11, Ordinary Time: 2 Col 11:18, 21-30; Mt 6:19-23]
Author and Goal
Father Maurice Emelu PhD., provides a daily blog of reflections based on the Scriptural readings of the day from the Catholic liturgical calendar. The goal is to teach, inspire, encourage, and foster healing through the grace of God's word. They are written in a language that is appropriate for a general audience. You will find these reflections helpful for your spiritual growth, inspiration, and developing your thoughts. They may also be useful for ministers in preparing their sermons for liturgical celebrations.