Prayer: Wake us up O Lord this day to the needs of all peoples. Wake us up O Lord this day to answer Your call of helping others. Amen.
Read St Luke 16: 19 – 31
To emphasis to the Pharisees (and us today) the conflict of possessions and piety, Jesus tells a parable. This is a “wake up” parable. Jesus begins this parable by telling of a rich man and a poor man. The rich man had everything and lived in luxury. The poor man was covered with sores and had to beg for everything in his life.
Then both men die. Lazarus is taken up by the angels to the lap of Abraham. The rich man is in hell and in torment. The rich man, who has had everything he could want in his life looks up and calls out to Abraham to have mercy and to ask for Lazarus to dip his finger in water to cool the rich man’s tongue for he is in torment.
The rich man knows Lazarus as he calls him by name. Yet, even though Lazarus sat outside the door of the rich man’s house, the rich man did not help Lazarus. The rich man with all his wealth ignored the needs of the poor and sick.
Abraham tells the rich man that he can not send Lazarus to help him… the rich man had all of his life to help others yet he chose to ignore the needs of others.
The rich man then asks Abraham to go speak to his five brothers and tell them to smarten up their lives and to help the poor and the sick and the needy. But Abraham answers that the five brothers have Moses and the Prophets to tell them how to live a good life.
Then comes the response from the rich man… “But they are not listening”. Abraham responds that if they won’t listen to Moses and the Prophets, they are not going to listen to someone who rises from the dead.
But they are not listening.
But they are not listening. Words that we too must heed this day. Are we listening to the words of Scripture telling us to go help the poor, the sick, the shut-in? Does our Church listen and help the poor, the sick, the shut-in?
Let us journey together with an Ignatian Examen time of Reflection and Prayer:
1. Give God thanks for all you have received. Give God thanks for the big things you have received as well as all the small things you have received. Remember the “things” are not monetary. Faith, life, family….. What have you received in your life that you are thankful?
2. Ask for the grace to know your sins and to root them out.
Spend time on this statement. Ask God to help you root out the things in your life that are sinful…. or caused hurt to yourself…. or caused hurt to others….
Ask God to help you remember and then ask for forgiveness of things you have said or not said… for things you have done or not done.
Be greatful for the life God has given to you.
3. Reflect over the day. What actions, thoughts, words, feelings have you had? Have your actions, thoughts, words, and feelings led you to God? Have you listened to the words of Scripture this day?
4. Ask God to forgive your sins and faults
It is in asking forgiveness of God that we become whole people of God.
5. With God’s help, what one thing will you resolve to change in your life tomorrow so that your life is a reflection of God?
Close with the Lord’s Prayer.