From The Hand of Fr. Aaron Ferris For August 12, 2018

In the Old Testament God commanded His people to tithe ten percent. We have seen the importance of this over the past couple weeks. When Jesus comes, He comes with an expanded message. His message is not just ten percent; His message is everything.

In the Gospel of Matthew, Chapter 19, there is the story of the Rich Young Man who wants to follow Jesus. Jesus tells him to sell all that he has and to follow Him. The Rich Young Man walks away sad because he can’t do it. St. Peter asks about those who have given up everything to follow Jesus, and Jesus responds: “And everyone who has given up houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands for the sake of my name will receive a hundred times more, and will inherit eternal life.” (Matthew 19:29)

In the Gospel of Luke, Jesus reminds His disciples: “For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it.” (Luke 9:24) We saw a couple weeks ago how integral money can be to our senses of security, freedom, and ego. Our willingness to sacrifice all of it, our life here and now, is the measure of our openness to the life that Jesus has in store for us.

In the Gospel of Mark, we have the story of the Widow’s Mite. (Mark 12:41-44) The woman is praised because she has sacrificed all that she had, her whole livelihood, to God. The monetary value may not have been much, but her sacrificial giving won the favor of the Lord.

These passages from Gospels deserve our reflection. We will delve into their meaning next week, but for now it would be good to meditate on what Jesus is telling us. We need to take them seriously. It is easy to minimize what He says, such as saying that these passages are only for those in religious orders, that we can’t be expected to live this way in the real world. The application may be different, but first we need to come to terms with exactly what the Lord is laying out for us.

Rev. Aaron Ferris
Rev. Aaron Ferris
Rev. Aaron R. Ferris Ordination Date: June 6, 2009 Pastor, St. Anthony Parish (Saranac) and St. Mary’s Parish (Lowell) 402 Amity Street Lowell, MI 49331 Phone: 616-897-9820
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