7 September, Wednesday — Material poverty, but not spiritual poverty

Wednesday of Week 23 in Ordinary Time

1 Cor 7:25-31
Lk 6:20-26

“How happy are you who are poor: yours is the kingdom of God.”

These days, rising inflation has made so many things expensive, including food and stationery. I fix a monthly budget, so I have been feeling the pinch of inflation. There were definitely things that I wished I could get, but they are so expensive, so I decide to buy something else cheaper. Like borrowing a book from one of our National Library branches instead of buying it at Kinokuniya.

But amidst the busyness and worries of cutting costs, I have forgotten to build up my spiritual riches. As my church is far from home, I usually have dinner at a food court near my church, before the inflation started. But ever since money became a #1 worry on my mind, I decided to stop attending weekday Masses often so that I could save money on food and transport.

After reading today’s Gospel, I felt bad. Like, really bad. It’s true that we’ve to be more prudent with our financial expenses. But is it really worth it to save money at the expense of our spiritual life? In Nigeria, people often walk on foot to church, even if the church is far away from their home. And this happens in many rural communities. But in Singapore, we have God’s blessings – 32 Catholic churches on one small island! So, why am I not attending Mass when I can?

St Josemaria Escriva wrote that we should see Mass in the form of God’s love as “Christ waiting in the Eucharist for two thousand years. It is God waiting for us, God who loves man, who searches us out, who loves us just as we are — limited, selfish, inconstant, but capable of discovering his infinite affection and of giving ourselves fully to him.” (Christ is Passing By, 151)

Now that the pandemic restrictions have lifted, let us all make our best effort to go to weekday Masses more often, to listen to God speaking to our hearts during the Gospel, receive the one and only daily bread that our souls need to sustain us, and spend some time making a devotion to Our Lady and the saints.

(Today’s OXYGEN by Brenda Khoo)

Prayer: Dear Lord, please help us to survive during this difficult economic period of rising inflation, and strengthen our faith and love in You too. Give us the nudge to receive You in the Eucharist more often by going for weekday Masses. Amen.

Thanksgiving: Dear Lord, thank you for giving us Your life-breathing grace to survive each day, despite the economic difficulties that we are facing, and for patiently waiting to welcome us in the Eucharist as the biggest sign of Your unconditional love for us. Amen.

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