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Twentieth Sunday in Ordinary Time – Cycle B

Reflecting on Proverbs 9: 1-16

Wouldn’t it be great to be Lady Wisdom? She has this gorgeous dinner prepared―and I’ll bet her house is clean too, and not just because she’s having company. The meat and wine are laid out, and her maids go out to call the guests. I know for sure I’m invited to that banquet, because it is specifically for “those who lack understanding.”

She, like a parent taking her child out for a driving lesson, is ready to impart a lifetime of vital, life-saving advice. But is her eager-to-get-on-the-road teenager paying attention?

We all wish we had listened when our own parents and teachers tried their best to set us on the straight path. How much happier and healthier we would be if we, in fact, HAD actually saved a portion of our paycheck, or eaten more broccoli and fewer brownies. Even as I write I’m still not sure the second part of that sentence is true.

And therein lays the problem. In order to see the fruits of wisdom in our lives we have to actually believe that we will be happier ―not right this minute, of course, but down the road―if we do the right thing. Happiness is a powerful motivator, but delaying gratification in order to have it is the challenge.

Look at our ancestors, the Jews said to Jesus. They gave us manna to eat. And Jesus’ retort is priceless. Right, and what do we notice about them? They all died in the wilderness. The quick fix of daily food kept them alive for a while. But Jesus, the New Moses, is looking at eternity, and gives us his Body and Blood to get there.

Okay. I’m listening.

What wisdom are you glad you listened to?

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I have come to light a fire on the earth; how I wish it were already burning (Lk.12:49).

Ordinary Time - Cycle B

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