Posted by: frburke23 | July 30, 2016

Thought for 18th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Luke 12:13-21
Someone in the crowd said to Jesus,
“Teacher, tell my brother to share the inheritance with me.”
He replied to him,
“Friend, who appointed me as your judge and arbitrator?”
Then he said to the crowd,
“Take care to guard against all greed,
for though one may be rich,
one’s life does not consist of possessions.”
Then he told them a parable.
“There was a rich man whose land produced a bountiful harvest.
He asked himself, ‘What shall I do,
for I do not have space to store my harvest?’
And he said, ‘This is what I shall do:
I shall tear down my barns and build larger ones.
There I shall store all my grain and other goods
and I shall say to myself, ‘Now as for you,
you have so many good things stored up for many years,
rest, eat, drink, be merry!'”
But God said to him,
‘You fool, this night your life will be demanded of you;
and the things you have prepared, to whom will they belong?’
Thus will it be for the one who stores up treasure for himself
but is not rich in what matters to God.”
“Take care to guard against all greed, for though one may be rich, one’s life does not consist of possessions.” How do these words from Jesus echo in our own hearts? Does greed control my life? What is at the center of my life? Does my life revolve around material things?
So much of our time in this country is spent toward amassing material possessions. We try to define our identity by what we own, what we have, what we possess. Like the rich man in the parable, we can be fooled into feeling safe because we have stored up riches that will last for years while we neglect what is most important. I am not saying that planning for the future is bad. It is good stewardship to prepare for the future. However, do not be fooled into a false sense of security by the material things you amass.
Jesus teaches us that our identity lies in the fact that we are sons and daughters of our heavenly Father. Our identity does not lie in what we do or what we have. It is who we are. When we realize deep in our soul that the Father loves us beyond our wildest imagination, we begin to realize that the material things don’t mean anything in the big picture. We cannot take those things with us to heaven. In fact, the less I have the more free I feel.
The rich man in the parable was trying to store up his treasure on earth. He thought it would give him security and lead to a life of relaxation and enjoyment. Yet this did not prepare him for meeting his Maker face to face. He forgot about the things that really matter – God, faith, hope, love, etc.
When we come face to face with God one day, I don’t think He is going to ask us, “How much money did you make?” or “What was your job title?” I think the Lord is going to ask us, “How much did you love? What did you do with the gifts that I gave you?”
What are your top priorities?
How much time do you spend focusing on making money versus the time you spend on your relationships with Jesus, family and friends?
What or whom do you look to in order to fill the void in your heart?
Do you know in your soul that you are loved by the Father?
Have you ever tried to downsize, simplify and spend more time focusing on your relationships with Jesus, family and friends?
Have a blessed day!
Fr. Burke
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Spanish translation:
Lucas 12, 13-21
En aquel tiempo, hallándose Jesús en medio de una multitud, un hombre le dijo: “Maestro, dile a mi hermano que comparta conmigo la herencia”. Pero Jesús le contestó: “Amigo, ¿quién me ha puesto como juez en la distribución de herencias?”
Y dirigiéndose a la multitud, dijo: “Eviten toda clase de avaricia, porque la vida del hombre no depende de la abundancia de los bienes que posea”.
Después les propuso esta parábola: “Un hombre rico obtuvo una gran cosecha y se puso a pensar: ‘¿Qué haré, porque no tengo ya en dónde almacenar la cosecha? Ya sé lo que voy a hacer: derribaré mis graneros y construiré otros más grandes para guardar ahí mi cosecha y todo lo que tengo. Entonces podré decirme: Ya tienes bienes acumulados para muchos años; descansa, come, bebe y date a la buena vida’. Pero Dios le dijo: ‘¡Insensato! Esta misma noche vas a morir. ¿Para quién serán todos tus bienes?’ Lo mismo le pasa al que amontona riquezas para sí mismo y no se hace rico de lo que vale ante Dios”.
“Tengan cuidado de evitar toda codicia, porque aunque uno puede ser rico, la vida de uno no consiste en posesiones.” ¿Cómo estas palabras de Jesús resuenan en nuestros propios corazones? ¿La avaricia controla mi vida? ¿Qué es lo que está en el centro de mi vida? ¿Mi vida gira en torno a las cosas materiales?
Gran parte de nuestro tiempo en este país se dedica a acumular posesiones materiales. Tratamos de definir nuestra identidad por lo que poseemos, lo que tenemos, y lo que es nuestro. Al igual que el hombre rico de la parábola, podemos ser engañados en la sensación de seguridad porque hemos acumulado riquezas que durarán por años mientras que descuidamos lo que es más importante. No estoy diciendo que la planificación para el futuro es malo. Es una buena administración el prepararse para el futuro. Sin embargo, no se dejen engañar por una falsa sensación de seguridad por las cosas materiales.
Jesús nos enseña que nuestra identidad reside en el hecho de que somos hijos e hijas de nuestro Padre celestial. Nuestra identidad no reside en lo que hacemos o en lo que tenemos. Reside en lo que somos. Cuando nos damos cuenta en lo profundo de nuestra alma que el Padre nos ama más allá de lo que podamos imaginar, nos damos cuenta de que las cosas materiales no significan nada en lo más importante. No podemos tomar las cosas con nosotros al cielo. De hecho, cuanto menos tengo el más libre me siento.
El hombre rico de la parábola estaba tratando de almacenar su tesoro en la tierra. Él pensó que le daría seguridad y conduciría su vida con relajación y disfrute. Sin embargo, esto no le preparo para encontrarse con su Creador de cara a cara. Se olvidó de las cosas que realmente son importantes – Dios, la fe, la esperanza, el amor, etc.
Cuando un día nos encontramos cara a cara con Dios, no creo que Él nos va a preguntar: “¿Cuánto dinero hiciste?” O “¿Cuál era nuestro trabajo o qué título teníamos?” Creo que el Señor nos va a preguntar “¿Cuánto amaste? ¿Qué hiciste con los dones y talentos que te di? “
¿Cuáles son tus prioridades?
¿Cuánto tiempo pasas centrando te en hacer dinero en comparación con el tiempo que pasas en tus relaciones con Jesús, con la familia y con los amigos?
¿Qué/quién es lo que buscas a fin de llenar el vacío en tu corazón?
¿Realmente sabes y sientes en tu alma que eres amado/a por el Padre?
¿Alguna vez ha tratado de reducir y simplificar lo que tienes y lo que haces, a fin de dedicar más tiempo a centrarte en tu relación con Jesús, tu familia y tus amigos?
Tenga un día bendecido,
P. Burke


  1. Great post Burke. So common in our society and with me personally before I brought God into my daily life. Along the same lines, I read a quote this morning about detachment. It was from the Catholic thing and written by Russell Shaw, ” to be detached, to practice detachment is to establish and maintain a relation to everything and everybody in one’s life according to which all things are valued by how much they help or hinder us in our relationship with God, the imitation of Jesus Christ, and the service of others.” Amen Brother. The words everything and everybody to me stress the importance that it is not just detachment from material things but relationships to others need to be cultivated in context of our relationship to God. It makes me think of how you have guided me in my relationship with Anne and my family. Have a great Sunday. I will be thinking of you during your travels to the city to share our great sacraments. Tell Joe at Wrigley that I said hello. Love you, Tom microphone off microphone off

    Date: Sat, 30 Jul 2016 21:09:30 +0000 To:

  2. Good morning Fr. Burke I hope you are doing well! It would be nice to hear back from you, you use to respond to my emails?

    Sue asked me if I felt if you have changed your perspective over the past few months? I asked how so? She said that you seem to assume everyone has all these material things etc…. That you are Categorizing that everyone has …. and that we all don’t have a spiritual prayer life … I asked her to explains, Sue said, it’s like maybe you only spend time with those who have all and then some… It would be nice to hear you talk about those who have sacrificed or lived a holy life and those who have made great spiritual growth despite their special circumstances.

    I still want to thank you for your meditations on our daily readings we always look forward to getting them! I used to look forward to hearing back from my responses (understanding of course WE are all busy). I do also understand that you are looking through different lenses then we are… specially having my family gave their life to the Him) and being back in the secular work force away from Church life, I try and keep that in mind. I know God has special plans for us to use his gifts for His glory and we pray every day “speak Lord your servant is listening!”

    In Christ & Love, Bill & Sue Crow

    ps Heb 13: 8 Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.

    Rom. 2:4, Or do you hold his priceless kindness, forbearance, and patience in low esteem, unaware that the kindness of God would lead you to repentance?

    Sent from my iPhone


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