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March 23, 2016

Wednesday of Holy Week

The Good News for the Day

One of the Twelve, who was called Judas Iscariot, approached the religious leaders and said, “What are you willing to give me if I hand him over to you?” They paid him a significant amount of money, and from that time on he was looking for an opportunity to hand him over. (Mathew 26, 14)

You and I can be traitors, like Judas, and not realize it. The Good News is that we self-correct, that we catch ourselves, and that we do not have to go through with it; we stay among others who are learning from Jesus the basic difference—the value of people.

You and I wrestle with this tug, this sneaky, powerful force—to get money—and keep it at the cost of indifference and even disdain for someone else who really needs it. Especially those of us who feel generous and noble about our equality with others—we forget and then deny that our security, comfort or control has become a demon motivating us.

But you are a repentant, changing, growing person. You are ready to look at the handful of cash, savings account, and investments, to see how seductive, attractive, and often overwhelmingly important it becomes. You need to feed, cure, and shelter people you love. So the love of money lurks as something you have to deal with. But the choice of people over prosperity frees you, lights up your life! You live without that burden.

Let us stay with the courage of St. Francis. You can live the Good News by awareness of the seductive call of money, of gain, of control and of power—and all the poisonous traits that money offers. You can rise above it. Live simply and enjoy, hard as it is. Join Jesus in confronting discomfort. Share the meal of life, Cherish the people you are with. Let the joyful, more important elements of life—sharing, kindness—dominate your life. It seems at times a clear choice—money or people? Control or service?

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