THIRTY THIRD SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME, YEAR A.
19th November 2023
Proverbs 31:10-13,19-20,30-31; 1 Thessalonians 5:1-6; Matthew 25:14-30.
The parable of the talents is presented on this Sunday to teach us that everything we have was given to us by God for the common good of humanity. Like the servants in the parable, each of us is gifted according to individual abilities. God is interested in how we used what was given and not how much was given. The first two servant made five and two more talents respectively but the ungrateful servant was unproductive due to fear.
Fear is a factor and an obstacle to Christian life. The ungrateful servant was obsessed by fear and was unable to use his God-given talent. He hid the talent because he was afraid of his master. Oftentimes our fears are unfounded. According to the parable, this ungrateful servant based his fear on hearsay: “I had heard you were a hard man, reaping where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered;…” The fear factor robbed him of the option of banking the talent to yield some interest. Fear focuses on the negatives thus paralyzing every motivation to action. Obsessed by fear, we give in to procrastination, making excuses, blaming and jealousy.
The remedy is reliance on two facts: One is gifted according to one’s ability and the expectation is on the usage of the talents for the common good. These facts according to St. Paul in the second reading, will enable us dispel the dark night of fear and embrace the day light of activity.
Fr Anthony Ekpunobi, CM.