…for he was looking forward to the city with foundations,
whose architect and maker is God. -Hebrews 11:10
I always wanted to be an architect. The closest I came to realize that dream was the first college course I ever took, an Interior Design course at the Art Institute of Chicago. In that course, we learned all about the placement and construction of good and lasting furniture. Looking back that sounds a bit esoteric in my world today, where I’m taught that if I’m not happy with my physical world, all I have to do is throw out my present belongings and replace them with whatever is the latest fad of the day.
Looking further into my world, I see a dichotomy, I suppose not too different from Abraham’s world that Paul talks about in our second scripture selection for today. Much of my world has all the marvels of great minds using the tremendous gifts from the earth, buildings that reach to the sky, and so on and so forth. In this same world however, I daily witness homeless people, people suffering from addiction, from mental and physical illnesses who don’t seem to be healed or taken care of, despite the fact that we throw more resources at these problems and have some of the most modern technology our world has ever known. What’s wrong? I wonder if we could use some new architects, some who might believe in what Luke writes about in today’s gospel selection:
Sell your belongings and give alms. Provide money bags for yourselves that do not wear out, an inexhaustible treasure in heaven that no thief can reach nor moth destroy. For where your treasure is, there also will your heart be. -Luke 12:33-34
God, you are a demanding god if I am to take Luke seriously. You don’t want half measures. You want my full commitment to your creation—not my creation—you are the architect. God, help me follow your son, Jesus, trusting that with you in charge, the world will blossom and reflect your loving, peaceful and joyful life for all your creatures.
Dan O’Donnell is a Passionist Partner and a longtime friend of the Passionists. He lives in Chicago.