How can we use our gifts for great good?

Sunday, September 25, 2022 | By Rev. Michael P. Hanifin

Readings: AM 6:1A, 4-7; PS 146:7-10;1 TM 6:11-16; LK 16:19-31

We have all been given great power by God in the form of Time, Talents, and Treasure. The readings this weekend remind us that this power is meant to be used for great good. And, that failure to do so has eternal consequences.

We see the urgency for us to put our powers to good use in today’s Gospel passage from Saint Luke. Our Lord tells the rather chilling parable of the rich man who ignored poor Lazarus during their lifetimes. At the moment of the rich man’s death, he goes down to the netherworld while Lazarus is taken to the eternal joy and comfort in the bosom of Abraham. The rich man keenly regrets his indifference towards the needs of Lazarus, but it is too late for regret. His choices have played out and now the rich man will face the consequences of his failure to use the gifts God gave him.

Pursuit of God’s kingdom and care for the poor are not trifling matters. Our Lord makes this clear to us over and over in the Scriptures and the constant teachings of our 2,000-year-old Church. We are free to ignore these teachings and live instead for ourselves. But there will be tragic results for us in the end. And, because we are made for eternity, living selfishly on this earth doesn’t really bring us true happiness anyway.

So how can we use our great powers for great good? By embracing a stewardship way of life. By putting God first in all areas of our lives — in the way we spend our time, the ways we share our talents, the ways we give of our financial resources. As Catholic Christians we are called to live outside of our comfort zone and to live – by our words and actions – our commitment to the Lord and the things that matter to Him.