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Biblical Encounter
Reflection
Commentary

Melissa Bane Sevier
Presbyterian Minister and Photographer

“You cannot serve both God and wealth. That’s the bottom line, and the last line of our text. It’s the truth that this parable is seeking.

If all we care about is getting wealthier, our relationships grow less important. We don’t care about the customer—just the customer’s money. We’ll give up time with family and friends to focus on what we think is more important at the moment. We don’t hang with our kids because we think we’re trying to make a better life for them.

If all we care about is getting wealthier, our bodies will suffer. We’ll be more stressed, less healthy, we’ll play less and sleep less, and eat things that aren’t as good for us. Because time is money, and you don’t get rich by taking walks and riding your bike, or by growing a garden and making a nice salad.

If all we care about is getting wealthier, our spiritual lives shrivel. This is just the truth that we feel in our bones. We find ourselves pulling away from our own spirits until the desire to be spiritual seems ridiculous.

We can’t love God and money. But it’s hard to figure out the balance. We have to work, have to pay the rent, buy shoes and school supplies for the kids, make sure we’ll someday be able to retire without burdening those kids.

Jesus doesn’t say it’ll be easy to do, this finding a balance. It will likely take a lifetime for most of us. But it’s worth the work of balancing. It’s worth the spiritual act of seeking money’s proper place in our lives and souls.”

Key Theme

Love God first

 
Questions
  • Why does Jesus praise the dishonest manager?
  • What is the message of this passage?
  • How do you balance materialism and faith?
Reflection Activity
  • Put extra money toward debt this week.
Prayer 44 from the Book of Common Prayer

O God our heavenly Father, you have blessed us and given us dominion over all the earth: Increase our reverence before the mystery of life; and give us new insight into your purposes for the human race, and new wisdom and determination in making provision for its future in accordance with your will; through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

  

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