In the long version of today’s gospel, we are given a verse that appears to be confusing. “That servant who knew his master’s will but did not make preparations nor act in accord with his will shall be beaten severely; and the servant who was ignorant of his master’s will but acted in a way deserving of a severe beating shall be beaten only lightly.”
One would ask the question, why would you want to be beaten at any time? If we are going to receive a beating no matter what we do why even try?
Perhaps this example might help answer your question. If you are the father of the family, ask your children this question. What is the most important thing to your mother? Would the children say they are most important, or would they say mother has other priorities? And the mother should ask the children what is most important to their father? Would they say they are or that father is always busy with his work?
Mother and father are good people, doing the best they can to serve their family. Sometimes priorities get mixed up. As you read this, what were your thoughts? Were you thinking what would my children say? If you do not like the answer you are thinking, are you being critical about who you are and what you do?
Then considering today’s gospel, would you agree that you are beating yourself. Even though you are doing good, you must stop and reflect on what are the greater needs of my family and then work to make that change of heart.
The last couple of Sundays we have been reading about storing up treasure in heaven. We do not know when our life will be taken away, ended. The thief will come to demand our life. If we have treasure on our earth, we will not take it with us. It will go to someone else. I remind people what you will take into heaven are your memories of love. God is love. And where God is there is love.
Our treasure in heaven is to always be in God’s love. We will only experience great love when we are with God. Here in this world those we leave behind will feel the loss and grief of your taking the step into eternal life. But they will still know how you loved them and how they loved you.
This is how we enter God’s love here on earth. And at the same time your treasure grows in heaven. Their treasure grows in heaven too.
We watch for the master of the house. It would be interesting to hear what our children think are our priorities. It would also be important to know what God thinks of our priorities. If being lightly beaten directs me back to God, then that is a good thing.
We all realize that God wants to give us the kingdom of God. Be not afraid. Trust in God. As we grow in faith we will grow in love. And as we grow in love we are taken up by the Father into His love.
May the Lord bless you in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen