Where do we find meaning? In what do we place our trust? These are central questions in every human life, and there is no shortage of answers vying for our acceptance.
In the Gospel, Jesus is asked to resolve an inheritance dispute between two brothers, but instead, he warns his listeners about the danger of giving in to greed. In Ecclesiastes, the writer laments how pointless it is to accumulate great possessions through hard work, when it all gets left to others who have not worked so hard. And in Hosea, God wrestles with a desire to judge the people who have turned away from God, but in the end God relents and promises restoration.
All of these accounts challenge us to think carefully about where we place our allegiance, and on what we depend for security and life. It is easy to say the words of faith, to sing the songs of faith, and to attend the gatherings of a community of faith.
But, it’s our actions and our values that reveal what we really believe. When we allow our desire for wealth or comfort to undermine our relationships, we contradict our faith in Jesus. When we seek pleasure, possessions or power for our own sakes, we get out of step with the mission and message of Jesus. But, as the call of Jesus takes hold of us, we slowly but surely start to see a shift in our priorities, we begin to embrace the sacrifice, simplicity and service of following Jesus, and we discover that abundant life is found not in the size of our bank accounts, but in the size of our hearts.