Thursday, 1st Week of Advent (6th December, 2018)
First Reading: Is 26: 1-6 (Everlasting rock)
Gospel: Mt 7: 21, 24-27 (Wise and foolish builders)
Jesus says, “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be” (Mt 6:21). This saying was in reference to Jesus’ exhorting the disciples to place one’s treasure in heaven. For if one’s treasure is on earth, one’s heart and attention will also be on earthly matters. This indicates another truth that we are prone to like a thing which we desire in our heart. We go to any extent till we get it or obtain it. We find this reflected in the parable of pearl or hidden treasure in the Gospel (Mt 13:45-46). When a person considers something to be precious for him and desires to possess it, he will be ready to do anything to get it. We find that in the parable, the farmer goes to the extent of selling everything he has so that he can possess it.
Today’s gospel speaks of the necessity of listening to the Word of God and put it into practice. It says that those who do it are like those who built their houses on a rock. It definitely says that those who anchor their life on the Word of God will have stable and unshaken life. On the other hand, those who do not listen to the Word of God and do not act on it will have their life unstable like a house built on sand.
The question is who likes to ignore the Word of God? Who likes to build a house on sand? Who likes to have their life shaken? No. definitely no one would. Yet why we are not able to listen to the Word of God and act on it so that our life might be stale like a house built to a rock. The reason is that we do not have any interest or likeness or desire for it. Our heart is perhaps set on other things transitory and momentary but we consider it or hold it as the most precious to the life.
We have umpteen examples in the Old Testament where we see the chosen ones of God like King Saul, David, Solomon showered with all blessings upon them. Yet we see their fall. Their kingdom and authority were like today’s gospel, a building that was built upon sand. For their mind was set not on God’s word, God’s instruction but anything else.
Today if we want to listen to God’s Word and act accordingly, we need to choose him more than anything else His Word should take deep root in our hearts and only then it can bear fruit in our life. His word should be considered as the most treasured things in our life for us. That is why Jesus says, “Seek thee first the Kingdom of God (Mt 6:33). Again, in the parable of the Rich fool, Jesus speaking about the vanity in seeking the momentary things says, “So it is worth those who store up treasures for themselves but are not rich towards God” (Lk 12:21). Hence the stability of our life depends on the degree we pay attention to the Word of God and act accordingly.
The reason why we need to look at the invisible but eternal goods is clearly shown in 2 Cor 4:17-18 where st. Paul says, “For this slight momentary affliction is preparing us for an eternal weight of glory beyond all measure, because we look not at what can be seen but at what cannot be seen; for what can be seen is temporary, but what cannot be seen is eternal”. And all these momentary things have their life span short and are perishable to as the Psalmist says, “Long ago you laid the foundation of the earth and the heavens are the work of your hands. They will perish, but you endure” (Ps 102:25-26). So, we need to look for and work for imperishable i.e. God’s reward which we get through anchoring on God’s word. We need to believe in God’s Word for He is the way, and the truth, and the life” (Jn 14:6). And when we truly believe and act on it, surely our life will be a mansion built on rack unshakable by anything. Amen.