Daily Reflection for Tuesday, June 01, 2021
Peace and Blessings, Friends and Parishioners,
We encourage you to reflect on Tuesday’s readings at this link:
If you prefer to use your own Bible, the readings are:
First Reading: Tobit 2:9-14
Responsorial: Psalm 112:1-2, 7-8, 9
Gospel: Mark 12:13-17
Our reflection on Tuesday’s readings:
“Repay to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs to God.” Mark 12:17
In today's Gospel, the Pharisees and the Herodians join forces to trap Jesus with a trick question. If Jesus answers one way, it is a blasphemy against the Jewish Law, and the other way is treason against the Roman government. One answer would get him stoned to death, and the other would get him crucified. Jesus answers: "… repay to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God, what belongs to God." The question is an "Either-or," but Jesus answers with "Yes-both."
It is tempting to allow a sense of pride to well up and be proud of Jesus' snarky response. But there is a more profound spiritual lesson in today's Gospel that I need to contemplate.
These past few months, a group of St Monica parishioners has been learning about stewardship, studying a booklet from The National Catholic Reporter called The Disciple as Steward by Sharon Hueckel. This is a six-session, small group study of the Stewardship Pastoral, A Disciple's Response. We met twice monthly, studying and contemplating stewardship and what we need to do to be good stewards and cultivate stewardship in ourselves and at St Monica. I learned that we could define good stewardship as the generous outpouring of time, talent and treasure. Is Jesus asking for more than an abundant outpouring of time, talent, and treasure?
If I equate Caesar to be all that is worldly and not just a ruler from two millennia ago, I am convicted by the spirit. Do worldly things consume the majority of my time, talent and treasure? Knowing that God has created all that we are and have, if I am to give to God what is God's, then Jesus is asking me to share all my heart, mind, and strength with Him and my neighbors.
The reflection question for today is: What must I give today to be a good steward and give to God what is God's?
Peace and Blessings,
Deacon John McShea