September 2, 2018 —Twenty-second Sunday in Ordinary Time
DT 4:1-2, 6-8; PS 15:2-5; JAS 1:17-18,21B-22,27; MK 7:1-8, 14-15, 21-23
In today’s Gospel from Mark, Jesus instructs us in the best way we can honor Him, teaching us the meaning of true worship. Jesus reveals that the way we truly worship Him is by giving Him our hearts. We also learn in this Gospel passage what our Lord does not want — the pious lip service that the scribes and Pharisees offer.
But how can we determine if we really are giving our hearts over to the Lord and not just paying Him lip service? We must examine our lives to see if they reflect a life lived out for Him. Stewardship gives us a concrete means to examine our lives in three fundamental areas — the use of our time, our talents, and our material gifts.
A stewardship way of life invites and challenges us to make specific commitments in each of these areas on a regular basis, giving us a practical means to commit to the Lord. How well we are keeping these commitments can give us a kind of measuring stick to see if we are growing closer to Him, or perhaps need to put a little more effort into a particular area of our lives.
When we all strive to give God true worship — putting Him first with all our hearts — what beauty we will find in our homes, our parish, and our world.