1 Cor. 1:26-31, Ps. 33:12-13,18-21, Matthew 25:14-30

“Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a little, I will set you over much; enter into the joy of your master.” (Matthew 25:23)

We do not all have equal opportunities in life but we all have equal abilities to make the best of our opportunities. Some of us were born with silver spoons, others with “clay pots.” Some were born into homes of physical, psychological, and mental abuse, some into havens of love, abundance, and peace.

This is the point St. Paul makes in today’s first reading. He says “not many of you were wise, not many were powerful, and not many were of noble birth…” but God, the perfect equalizer, chooses what is foolish to shame the wise and what is weak to shame the strong so that at the end, NO ONE CAN BOAST about anything.

One can actually look at life and blame God for being so unfair but in truth, God is kind and just to everyone. The parable of the talents given by Jesus in today’s Gospel passage addresses this concern. The master had three servants and to one he gave five talents, to another, two talents, and to the third, he gave one talent. There is just no way we can all be the same; there is no way we can all have the same amount of talents and gifts but God gives to us according to our individual capacities.

Rather than engage in useless competitions with one another or expend energy fighting for equality (a fight that will never end), rather than engage in the “pull-him-down” games we play often, there is much peace that comes with accepting our own truths and realizing it is not what we have that counts but how we manage it.

You see, the one who got two talents did not ask for more simply because another got five. He traded with his and produced four while the other produced ten. Your two talents can never produce ten. God will not judge you for failing to produce ten. He knows four is your capacity. You are unique, you are different, and your entire life is itself an opportunity; use it and make the best of it. Stop competing with others. Compete with your own self by striving to be better than what you were yesterday.

Finally, the one who got only one talent is a perfect depiction of what envy does to us. When we begin to feel sad at what others have, we no longer appreciate what is ours and end up burying our God-given talents. Envious people are never tired of complaining and speaking of others in a bad light. This man was so used to complaining that when the master arrived, he complained about the master’s character saying he was a hard man blah. blah. blah. Stop blaming God, stop asking “why me?” Stop looking at the expanse of your lack or the seemingly “unfairness” of God, take your one talent today, and start working!

Today, we celebrate the life of a great Saint. A woman of excellence; a mother to the core; a woman who believed that with God nothing is impossible; a true mother who would never give up on her wayward son; a woman who believed in the power of prayers and continued to pray even when it seemed as if her boy was getting worse every day. Today we celebrate a mama-father, a mama-bishop, and a super mum who knew the art of raising a child. St. Monica is an icon of true motherhood, a great patron of mothers, and a shining example of the meaning of what it takes to be a mother.  

Like the widow who kept pestering the unjust judge, St. Monica prayed relentlessly for her son St. Augustine. And like the Canaanite woman who was prepared to receive insults from Jesus for the sake of her daughter who was possessed, St. Monica went through thick and thin for her son Augustine. 

Let us pray: Almighty ever-living God, bless us our mothers that they would be the best of mothers to their children. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Be Happy. Live Positive. Have Faith. It is well with you. God bless you. (Saint Monica. Bible Study: 1 Cor. 1:26-31, Ps. 33:12-13,18-21, Matthew 25:14-30).

© Rev. Fr. Evaristus Abu