Thought of the day
Sunday, July 27, 2014

Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time - Year A
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"He goes and sells all that he has"

Saint Basil (c.330-379), monk and Bishop of Caesarea in Cappadocia, Doctor of the Church 
Greater monastic Rules, § 8
"He goes and sells all that he has"

Our Lord Jesus Christ frequently and insistently repeated : “Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross and follow me” (Mt 16,24)… And elsewhere: “If you wish to be perfect, go, sell what you have and give to the poor,” after which he adds: “then come, follow me” (Mt 19,21).

For someone who understands it, the parable of the merchant is saying the same thing : « “The Kingdom of heaven is like a treasure buried in a field, which a person finds and hides again, and out of joy goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.” Undoubtedly, the precious pearls here refer to the Kingdom of heaven and our Lord shows us that it is impossible to gain it unless we give up all we possess: wealth, esteem, high birth, and those things that other people greedily seek after.

Our Lord has also declared that it is impossible to be properly busied about one’s tasks when the mind is distracted by all sorts of things: “No one can serve two masters,” he said (Mt 6,24). That is why the “treasure in heaven” is the only one we should choose to fix our heart on: “For where your treasure is, there also will your heart be” (Mt 6,21)… To sum up, it is a matter of our raising our hearts to the life of heaven in such a way that we would be able to say: “Our citizenship is in heaven” (Phil 3,20). Above all, it is to begin to be like Christ, who: “though he was rich, made himself poor for our sake” (2Cor 8,9).
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