“...the children of this age are more shrewd in dealing with their own generation than are the children of light.
And I tell you, make friends for yourselves by means of dishonest wealth
so that when it is gone, they may welcome you into the eternal homes.”
The world is full of inspiring stories about people who have made heroic efforts to achieve their goals- athletes, students, business tycoons, world leaders, and even criminals, all so obsessed with a single objective that they will not allow anything to get in their way. Some of them will even make ethical compromises, break laws, and neglect their duty to family and friends if that is what it takes.
Jesus tells one such parable in this Sunday’s Gospel (Luke 16:1-13), traditionally entitled ‘The Unjust Steward’- it’s a bit of a head-scratcher, but well worth a read (and meditation). As one commentator puts it, the parable of the unjust steward is a symbol of our life. Like the steward, everything we have is a gift from God, and we are merely stewards of the things He has entrusted us with. Jesus doesn’t praise the steward’s dishonesty- rather, He praises his determination.
As sinners, we have one way or another ‘squandered’ what is the Lord’s. Sooner or later, like the dishonest steward, will be called to ‘prepare a full account of our stewardship.’ The dishonest steward shows mercy to his master’s debtors by spending his master’s money. In a similar way, when we forgive others as God has forgiven us, and when we show others mercy as He has shown us mercy, we are ‘spending’ what is His, to ‘store up treasures’ for ourselves in heaven.
Will we not be forgiven as we have forgiven, and be shown mercy as we have shown mercy? Then let us be ‘shrewd’ in our dealings- just as all those inspiring stories of dedication and of sacrifice, and even moreso because our purpose is greater than anything in this world. The purpose of our lives is to get to Heaven, and to bring as many people with us as possible. To that end, we ought to pull out all the stops.
God Love You,