Then Jesus said to the disciples, “There was a rich man who had a manager, and charges were brought to him that this man was squandering his property. So he summoned him and said to him, ‘What is this that I hear about you? Give me an accounting of your management, because you cannot be my manager any longer.’ Then the manager said to himself, ‘What will I do, now that my master is taking the position away from me? I am not strong enough to dig, and I am ashamed to beg. I have decided what to do so that, when I am dismissed as manager, people may welcome me into their homes.’
So, summoning his master’s debtors one by one, he asked the first, ‘How much do you owe my master?’ He answered, ‘A hundred jugs of olive oil.’ He said to him, ‘Take your bill, sit down quickly, and make it fifty.’ Then he asked another, ‘And how much do you owe?’ He replied, ‘A hundred containers of wheat.’ He said to him, ‘Take your bill and make it eighty.’ And his master commended the dishonest manager because he had acted shrewdly; for the children of this age are more shrewd in dealing with their own generation than are the children of light.
And I tell you, make friends for yourselves by means of dishonest wealth so that when it is gone, they may welcome you into the eternal homes. “Whoever is faithful in a very little is faithful also in much; and whoever is dishonest in a very little is dishonest also in much. If then you have not been faithful with the dishonest wealth, who will entrust to you the true riches? And if you have not been faithful with what belongs to another, who will give you what is your own?
No slave can serve two masters; for a slave will either hate the one and love the other, or be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth.”
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
I think often we misunderstand intercessory prayer – supplications and petitions. We tend to think of it mechanically, as if it were simply a matter of putting in a request to God and having it answered – with the answer depending on the divine mood on any given day.
I have an image in mind that offers a different understanding of intercessory prayer: throwing a stone into a pond and watching the ripples affect the whole environment. Things don’t happen in the world simply and immediately because I pray, but they do happen in the world when I pray. I am changed as I discover the deepest desires of my heart and the world is changed as I recognize the power and majesty and mystery of God, the creator of heaven and earth and lover of our souls.
—Fr. Martin Connell, S.J. serves John Carroll University, University Heights, OH, as professor education. He is also the Rector of the Jesuit community there.
I want what you want, O Lord. By asking you for guidance, with complete faith and confidence that you are helping me, nothing that I am called upon to do becomes ‘too much’ or ‘too bothersome.’ Nor is there any room for worry. I will find it easy to ask you each day to be a partner in my work…to help me get things done…to weigh my actions and decisions in the light of ‘ is this right?’ ‘is this just?’ ‘is this doing your will?’
With your help I will make decisions better and faster, confident that you will not lead me astray. I will live my life each day knowing that it is your will I accomplish. Amen.
—National Conference of Christian Employers and Managers