by Fr. Joe
“For where your treasure is, there also will your heart be.” – Luke 12:34
Did the title capture your attention? Treasure, a bounty of riches waiting to be discovered, engages our imagination. Stories of treasure hunting, treasure maps and buried treasure stimulate interest and inspire novels, films and media frenzy. The desire for the unknown to be known is a God given human gift. We are created by God with an innate curiosity and restlessness that compels us to seek out what is new, significant or of great value. Our hearts yearn to be satisfied but are often left wanting, no matter how much earthly treasure we acquire.
Our Christian faith and spiritual life invite us to discover that God is our present and ultimate treasure. God is the treasure seeking to capture our attention. We use our imagination to remind ourselves that we already possess a bounty of riches. God gives a treasure trove in the creation of our world, the blessing of our lives, every gift and talent bestowed, and through all those we love or will ever love. The Scripture, our Church tradition and our own experience map the way and inspire us. Our search is for the treasure of God who is discoverable in all things and just under the surface within us.
Jesus reminds us in today’s Gospel that what we treasure profoundly affects the pattern of our choices and the course of our lives, “For where your treasure is, there also will your heart be.” Where our heart and treasure truly lie, forms our thoughts and dreams, shapes our feelings and expresses itself in our every word and action. Jesus teaches that our God is pleased to be discovered, revealed and known by us as our true inexhaustible and eternal treasure.
As we explore God’s bountiful presence in our world, in each other and in ourselves we grow in our eagerness to set out on new adventures, sharing our treasure with others. We are challenged to use our curiosity to look for ways to share from our own treasure chest. Sharing our time, talent, goods and love only enriches the treasure we are being continually given as an eternal promise. As we grow in celebrating God’s gift we develop deeper gratitude and eagerness to give freely from our bounty. God cannot be outdone in generosity. Our restless hearts find peace in the treasure of God.
The Treasure of a Broken Bone?
Not all of life’s experiences seem like treasures. In fact, many times we might think, “If this is a treasure, let’s bury it!” Often, the discovery of treasure involves digging through some deep dirt. One small example, last week I broke my 5th metatarsal, a bone in my right foot. The treasure in my physical challenge and the needed adjustment to my life is not easily seen. Yet, treasure is discoverable in the gifts that this accident and these future weeks of recovery offer. The spiritual challenge is to be curious and to ask with faith, “So God, what is the treasure in this right now?” The answer for me in this moment is in God’s presence found in the compassion of others, the sacrifice of many to help me and the extra prayer and grace that keeps my grumbling to a minimum. This encounter with my humanity and dependence on others is an opportunity for me to discover God in the gifts beneath the surface.
Discover Treasure for Yourself
So many of our gifts are taken for granted in the routine of the everyday; so many treasures are overlooked. Use your own gift of curiosity to seek out what treasure is significant and valuable in your life. Take a moment to discover the treasure of God in all things by sharing your gift of time in prayer with the following reflection questions.
- What are my treasures, the bounty of riches that you bless me with God?
- How do I search for the treasure of you, my God, within me?
- What treasure is new, significant or valuable to me?
- A list of my blessings includes…
- Who do I need to thank for being a treasure to me?
- For whom am I a treasure?
- What is happening that seems like a treasure better buried? How might I be more curious in prayer, in order to discover some value in this situation?
- How will I more freely share my time, talents, gifts, goods and love with others to enrich their lives?
Giver of all gifts, lead me to discover you more fully
as the treasure of my heart.
May I gratefully share all that I have been given as
an offering of my treasure,
Through Christ our Lord. Amen.