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Saturday, August 28, 1999

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St. Augustine

1 Thessalonians 4:9-12
Psalm 98
Matthew 25:14-30

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the joyful slavery of stewardship

"He called in his servants and handed his funds over to them according to each man's abilities." —Matthew 25:14

The Lord expects us to be good and faithful servants, or translated more precisely, "slaves" (Mt 25:14). The fact that the Lord calls us to be His slaves indicates that good stewardship is more than a matter of money. It has become common to speak of stewardship as involving "time, treasure, and talent." This way of approaching stewardship is an improvement and a nice alliteration. However, stewardship is not only giving more to the Lord. It is a matter of slavery — giving all to the Lord. It is a matter of denying ourselves (Lk 9:23) and losing our lives (Lk 9:24).

Stewardship is radical, total giving of the Christian life. Stewardship is giving Him all our money, time, talent, energy, resources, possessions, relationships, opportunities, hopes, plans, desires, etc. The Christian life is not merely a matter of commitment. Work, sports, and education likewise require commitment. The Christian  life is a matter of total commitment in imitation of the crucified Christ. Put your stewardship at the foot of the cross.

Prayer:  Father, one day as Your slave is better than a thousand doing anything else (see Ps 84:11).

Promise:  "Work with your hands as we directed you to do, so that you will give good example to outsiders and want for nothing." —1 Thes 4:11-12

Praise:  St. Augustine, one of the greatest intellectuals in the history of the Catholic Church, is a Doctor of the Church. Over four hundred of his sermons are still in circulation today.

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, February 22, 1999

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 24, 1999