1 Corinthians 1:26-31
Consider your own call, brothers and sisters: not many of you were wise by human standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth. But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong; God chose what is low and despised in the world, things that are not, to reduce to nothing things that are, so that no one might boast in the presence of God. He is the source of your life in Christ Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification and redemption, in order that, as it is written, “Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.”
Psalm 33: 12-13, 18-21
Happy is the nation whose God is the Lord,
the people whom he has chosen as his heritage.
The Lord looks down from heaven;
he sees all humankind.
Truly the eye of the Lord is on those who fear him,
on those who hope in his steadfast love,
to deliver their soul from death,
and to keep them alive in famine.
Our soul waits for the Lord;
he is our help and shield.
Our heart is glad in him,
because we trust in his holy name.
“For it is as if a man, going on a journey, summoned his slaves and entrusted his property to them; to one he gave five talents, to another two, to another one, to each according to his ability. Then he went away. The one who had received the five talents went off at once and traded with them, and made five more talents. In the same way, the one who had the two talents made two more talents. But the one who had received the one talent went off and dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money. After a long time the master of those slaves came and settled accounts with them. Then the one who had received the five talents came forward, bringing five more talents, saying, ‘Master, you handed over to me five talents; see, I have made five more talents.’ His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and trustworthy slave; you have been trustworthy in a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master.’ And the one with the two talents also came forward, saying, ‘Master, you handed over to me two talents; see, I have made two more talents.’ His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and trustworthy slave; you have been trustworthy in a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master.’ Then the one who had received the one talent also came forward, saying, ‘Master, I knew that you were a harsh man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you did not scatter seed; so I was afraid, and I went and hid your talent in the ground. Here you have what is yours.’ But his master replied, ‘You wicked and lazy slave! You knew, did you, that I reap where I did not sow, and gather where I did not scatter? Then you ought to have invested my money with the bankers, and on my return I would have received what was my own with interest. So take the talent from him, and give it to the one with the ten talents. For to all those who have, more will be given, and they will have an abundance; but from those who have nothing, even what they have will be taken away. As for this worthless slave, throw him into the outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’
In the current crisis in the church, one can feel powerless in face of the clergy sex abuse scandals. How can the laity or the ones "not in power" bring about the necessary house cleaning in the church when the problem lies with those in the utmost authority? Our scripture today provides us the answer and much needed comfort. While one may feel weak and powerless, God assures us that He uses the weak to confound the wise and chooses to use those who are weak and powerless so that He may further demonstrate His power and glory.
In the gospel today, Jesus uses the parable of the talents to teach us a lesson. Whether you are given one, two, or five talents, God calls you to use whatever He gives you to serve and build His kingdom. If you can't see how God can use you to bring about the purification of His church, remember that If you are a good steward with little, He will give you more.
If you are a person with no power or influence, take courage. You are the vessel that God desires to use to shine through the darkness. You do not boast in yourself or your own doings but you boast in the Lord. In these days of darkness being revealed in the church and those in power and authority being shown to be betrayers of the faithful, remember who is the ultimate authority. Soldier on in your vocation and continually offer your life and work to God. He will take your offering and use it to rebuild His church on earth.
Prayer: Dear Jesus, thank you for shining your light on the darkness that has been so long covered up in the church. I offer you every aspect of my life. In sanctifying me, my work, and all I am, sanctify your church. Take my offering Lord, and teach me to only and always boast in you. Amen.