Monday of the Twenty-fifth Week in Ordinary Time
(Proverbs 3:27-34; Luke 8:16-18)
In a movie some years ago an Italian-American father shares his wisdom with his son. He says that nothing is worse than a person wasting God-given talent. The father cites Joe DiMaggio as an example. The famous athlete made full use of his abilities to become one of the greatest baseball players in the history of the sport. In fact his accomplishment of hitting safely in fifty-six consecutive games is still a major league record. Jesus has some similar advice for his disciples in today’s gospel.
The lesson takes place after Jesus explains to his disciples alone the parable of the seed falling on different terrains. Now he implies that they are all fertile soil capable of producing much fruit. But, he says, they must put their individual talents to good use. They cannot squirrel them away exclusively for their own welfare, much less ignore them completely. No, they have to employ them to benefit the Kingdom of God or, Jesus says, they will be taken away.
God is not treating us harshly by expecting us to use our talents for the good of others. Rather He is urging us to grow in virtue by caring for the needy. Further He is moving us closer to Himself as the reward of eternal life.