WSC Reflection November 7, 2021

32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time (Cycle B, Year I)
Community Word: Jesus Christ, King of the Universe, reigns in the heart of those who are faithful to Him.
Theme: Those who are faithful to Christ the King give generously without reservation.
Promise: “The Lord keeps faith forever, secures justice for the oppressed, gives food to the hungry. The Lord sets captives free.” (Ps 146:7)

In the readings for the 32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time, we encounter very touching stories of two poor widows who generously gave their all for others out of love and total reliance on God’s providence. About the woman who gave two coins, Jesus gave gracious words of commendation for her generosity, “I tell you that this poor widow contributed more than all the others who donated to the treasury. They gave from their surplus wealth, but poor as she is, she gave all she had – all that she had to live on,” (Mk12:43). Real giving must come from the heart and this is what makes the widow’s contribution greater and more meaningful. God certainly looks at the intention of the giver rather than the amount given. The highest form of richness is that of the heart, its loving disposition toward others without asking anything in return.
God knows what we give Him and what we keep from Him. He beholds how people give; He sees all and He watches us from a vantage point only He knows where. The Lord knows if the giver is giving generously and cheerfully, or grudgingly and reluctantly. He values large offerings by the rich who cast in much out of their abundance, but He knows too if it is given with sincerity or just for show. We need not be great in people’s eyes, but we must aim to be great in the eyes of God. Let us not just give from our abundance, but from our substance.
In the gospel reading, the widow was not ashamed of her small contribution for she felt God knew that she was giving more than what she could afford. Her generosity and faith is far in comparison to many rich and pompous people keen on making a show of themselves, displaying their wealth and their religiosity in public. Their offering is hallow and means nothing to the Lord. To Jesus, “it is they who will receive the severest sentence,” (Mk 12:40b). We must be aware that nothing is secret to Jesus as He notices everything, especially what is in our heart. He counts as precious the offering of the poor. Though they might have reason not to give anything – low income, priority for family needs, yet out of their meagerness, they are aware that there are meaningful reasons to give. The real value of wealth must be reckoned in terms of love and service. It will always be a blessing to the Lord’s work everywhere if people would first set aside that which belongs to God, which after all is His due. Faith is about loving and trusting the One who is leading us.
The stories about the poor widows not only challenge us to imitate their generosity, faith and love, but also because their actions contain a message of awareness and hope that God notices and appreciates even small acts of generosity which many often ignore or despise. We are called to be generous with our love, our forgiveness, our patience, and our compassion. We are called to offer our precious time, God-given talent and earthly treasure to help build His Kingdom on earth. We are called to honor Him with all substance, making our love gifts generous and our offerings regular. And we can be sure all our needs will be met according to God’s promise of abundant provision, “The Lord keeps faith forever, secures justice for the oppressed, gives food to the hungry. The Lord set captives free,” (Ps146:7).

Lord Jesus, let nothing in this world keep us from manifesting Your generosity. Help us see the needs that are always around us. Give us a kinder and gracious heart, that we might be of some use to those around us, that we may not be fixated on our own desires. Before You, we seek courage to lay down our own comfort for the sake of others. Help us not to be swayed by the luxuries of this world, but animated by Your spirit that we might become renewed in our minds by Your word.
Loving Jesus, we trust that when we are generous, we feel assured that You will take care of our needs because You are our Good Shepherd. Yes, we may give, but if our hearts are troubled and we do not give in faith, our works mean nothing. Lord, calm our troubled hearts so that we may give joyfully and in faith, without reservation. May this giving shine its light before all and bring glory to Your name. Amen.

Reflection Questions:

  1. How generously and regularly do I contribute to the needs of the Church and my community?
  2. Do I give unconditionally and without expecting anything in return? How can I grow in faith and in generosity?

This Week’s Daily Mass Reading Guide:
November 7, 2021 (Sun) – 1 Kgs 17:10-16/ Ps 146:7, 8-9, 9-10/ Heb 9:24-28/ Mk 12:38-44
November 8, 2021 (Mon) – Wis 1:1-7/ Ps 139:1b-3, 4-6, 7-8, 9-10/ Lk 17:1-6
November 9, 2021 (Tue) – Ez 47:1-2, 8-9, 12/ Ps 46:2-3, 5-6, 8-9/ Jn 2:13-22
November10, 2021 (Wed) – Wis 6:1-11/ Ps 82:3-4, 6-7/ Lk 17:11-19
November 11, 2021 (Thurs) – Wis 7:22b-8:1/ Ps 119:89, 90, 91, 130, 135, 175/ Lk 17:20-25
November 12, 2021 (Fri) – Wis 13:1-9/ Ps 19:2-3, 4-5ab/ Lk 17:26-37
November 13, 2021 (Sat) – Wis 18:14-16; 19:6-9/ Ps 105:2-3, 36-37, 42-43/ Lk 18:1-8

“Ignorance of the Bible is ignorance of Christ. Read your Bible daily!”


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