We are a blessed people! In our reading from 1 Peter today, we are reminded of how truly blessed we are in receiving a new birth to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. We are told we have an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled and unfading, kept for us in heaven. Then we hear Jesus telling us in the gospel that, while all are welcome, it will be harder for those who choose riches over love of neighbor. We have all been given the gift of faith, we are all called to live as faithful children of the one God, no matter our status, culture, state in life or life circumstances.
Jesus lovingly challenges all of us to; “Go, sell what you have, and give to the poor and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me.” Will we be like the man who went away sad because he had many possessions and was not willing to give them up or will we step up to the challenge Jesus puts before us this day. We are called to clean out our physical closets that are crammed with ‘stuff’ we don’t need or haven’t used or never intend to use in our lifetime. We are called to share our wealth with those at the food pantry, clothes closet, homeless shelter and other organizations set up to help those less fortunate.
It is easy to share our wealth in a physical sense, but we are also called to look inside ourselves, check out how we are doing with our interior well-being, how are we growing in faith with each other and what does our relationship with our loving God look like? Lent begins in just a few short days. It is a time to clean out our soul closet and make room for that life-giving spirit of God to take center stage, a time to empty ourselves of the need for more and be open to the hope and promise that can only be found in service to God and our sisters and brothers in need.
Theresa Secord recently retired as a Pastoral Associate at St. Agnes Parish, Louisville, Kentucky.