As they were listening to this, he went on to tell a parable, because he was near Jerusalem, and because they supposed that the kingdom of God was to appear immediately. So he said, “A nobleman went to a distant country to get royal power for himself and then return. He summoned ten of his slaves, and gave them ten pounds, and said to them, ‘Do business with these until I come back.’ But the citizens of his country hated him and sent a delegation after him, saying, ‘We do not want this man to rule over us.’
When he returned, having received royal power, he ordered these slaves, to whom he had given the money, to be summoned so that he might find out what they had gained by trading. The first came forward and said, ‘Lord, your pound has made ten more pounds.’ He said to him, ‘Well done, good slave! Because you have been trustworthy in a very small thing, take charge of ten cities.’ Then the second came, saying, ‘Lord, your pound has made five pounds.’ He said to him, ‘And you, rule over five cities.’ Then the other came, saying, ‘Lord, here is your pound. I wrapped it up in a piece of cloth, for I was afraid of you, because you are a harsh man; you take what you did not deposit, and reap what you did not sow.’
He said to him, ‘I will judge you by your own words, you wicked slave! You knew, did you, that I was a harsh man, taking what I did not deposit and reaping what I did not sow? Why then did you not put my money into the bank? Then when I returned, I could have collected it with interest.’ He said to the bystanders, ‘Take the pound from him and give it to the one who has ten pounds.’ (And they said to him, ‘Lord, he has ten pounds!’) ‘I tell you, to all those who have, more will be given; but from those who have nothing, even what they have will be taken away. But as for these enemies of mine who did not want me to be king over them—bring them here and slaughter them in my presence.’”
After he had said this, he went on ahead, going up to Jerusalem.
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 often am telling my students, and myself, that Love requires action. We cannot love and be inactive at the same time. Love moves us. It is not a passive thing that we experience, and have it wash over us. We are drawn up into the power of it and given life by Love.
Today’s Gospel reading reminds me of the call to act! The first two servants do act, and the third does nothing. He keeps the coin in his pocket. And the rebuke against his inactivity is quick and decisive. It can be terrifying at times to act and have love move us, but it is what we are called to. Especially today as we remember the UCA martyrs in El Salvador, men and women who loved the poor, and acted in the face of a terrifying situation.
How will you Love actively today?
—Griffin Knipp serves as Campus Minister and Coordinator of Student Life at Cristo Rey Jesuit High School in Milwaukee WI.
Lead me, Lord, from death to life,
from falsehood to truth.
Lead me, Lord, from despair to hope,
from fear to trust.
Lead me from hate to love,
from war to peace.
Let peace fill my heart, my world, my universe. Amen.
—Universal peace prayer