Today’s Gospel reminds us not to rely upon the things of this earth. Rather, we are to mindful of the ultimate end of every human person and of all creation…eternal life…God’s Kingdom. Hear again the words of God to the rich man in Luke’s Gospel: “You fool, this night your life will be demanded of you; and the things you have prepared, to whom will they belong?’ Thus will it be for all who store up treasure for themselves but are not rich in what matters to God.” (Luke 12: 20-21)
This is a great “stewardship” Gospel passage. We learn that everything we have is a gift from God, and that the true Christian recognizes this truth, and discovers the “freedom” to invest his or her whole self and all that he or she has in God’s Kingdom. This is simply another twist on the great teaching of Jesus to Love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.”
Another way of looking at this is the Christian understanding of what true human fulfillment entails. Pope Benedict XVI in his teachings on the early Church Fathers had this to say regarding the theology of St. Maximus the Confessor:
“St. Maximus demonstrates that man does not find his unity, the integration of himself, or his totality within himself but by surpassing himself, by coming out of himself. Thus, also in Christ, by coming out of himself, man finds himself in God, in the Son of God…all that is required is to understand the dynamism of the human being who is fulfilled only by coming out of himself; it is in God alone that we find ourselves, our totality, and our completeness. Hence, we see that the person who withdraws into himself is not a complete person but the person who is open, who comes out of himself, becomes complete, and finds himself, finds his true humanity, precisely in the Son of God.” (The Fathers Volume II, pp. 64-65)
How many times have you heard someone tell another person who is “self-absorbed” “Get over yourself!” This is modern parlance which captures this fundamental Christian truth that our ultimate end is in Christ. Our ultimate meaning and purpose is found in discovering God’s plan and path for life, and investing all we are and all we have in God’s Kingdom.