King David had a heart to heart talk with God in the first reading for mass today. It appears that this was his custom. David was on familiar terms with God. He knew Him pretty well. King David had a servant’s heart. Our popes are like that too, both Pope Francis and our former Pope Benedict. They have a servant’s heart too, which is just a beautiful thing. King David’s heart is beautiful. No wonder God loved him so. Perhaps it is because David loved Him very much too. King David’s prayer was not focused on himself, only on God and His people. It almost seems like David was having a conversation with a friend, even though it is God that he is speaking to. David only talks about being of service to God, and he speaks of the future. God promised that King David’s son would build a permanent house for the Lord and that his kingdom would remain firm forever, and it did because Jesus Christ was his descendant.
Jesus said in today’s gospel that, “the measure with which you measure will be measure out to you, and still more will be given to you.” That’s exactly what happened with King David. King David served God, and His people with all of his heart, his soul, and his resources and God made his kingdom firm forever, and promised King David even more – to make his descendents great as well.
Jesus also said in today’s gospel, “To the one who has, more will be given; from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away.” King David was given more than he could have ever asked for, but that is not always the case with us. Sometimes we have been blessed by God, and received some lovely gifts and blessings, but we hoard them to ourselves. It’s kind of funny, but the more we cling to the things we have, the less happy we are. The more we give our time, talent and treasure to others though, the more joy we receive back in return.
In another place in the gospels, Jesus told us to go into our inner room and pray to God in secret and that when we give alms, do so in private as well. But, that isn’t true for the fruits of prayer. What happens in our private prayers should remain private, but the fruits of prayer should be visible for all to see. The spiritual “fruits” of our lives give glory, honor and praise to God and to His son, Jesus.
In the first reading for mass today, the fruit of King David’s prayers resulted in many public blessings for his people, and his son, King Solomon would be the person to build God His “House” so that He would no longer reside in a tent among them. God wanted a “House”, a holy temple for Him to reside in, because He would be glorified and visible for all the people to see. This is what Jesus meant by not putting a lamp under a bushel or hide it under a bed. Our lights, our good fruit, should be visible to others because this is the way we glorify Jesus Christ.
The opposite can be true too though. Our sins which we think are secret, will one day come to light. If we aren’t doing a very good job at work, eventually it will show. But, if we are doing an excellent job, that will one day show as well. Eventually the truth comes out.
The readings for mass today remind us to maintain a good prayer life. We should regularly tell God our troubles, hopes, dreams, struggles, problems, and concerns. He is interested in all aspects of our lives and wants to have a personal relationship with us. The second thing might be to remember that the fruits of our prayers should become visible in our world. It’s not enough to feel God’s love when we pray. We need to share His love in a tangible, real way in our world, so that others can be drawn near to Him as well.
The comfort, joy, peace and love we experience when we receive Jesus in communion each week, and the guidance, support and friendship that we receive from God when we pray, are treasures that are not meant to be hoarded, or kept to ourselves. Jesus Christ is the light of the world, but we were created to be lampstands. We are not the light, but we can hold his light for others to see. Jesus will shine in the darkness and show all of us the way to Our Father’s Kingdom.
Daily Mass Readings:
2 Sm 7: 18-19, 24-29 / Ps 132: 1-2, 3-5, 11, 12, 13-14 / Mk 4: 21-25