Sunday Micro Retreat – July 31, 2022
As you begin your time of reflection, try to realize that you are standing on holy ground and in the presence of God who wants to talk to you and listen to you.
Make the Sign of the Cross. The Holy Spirit is opening your heart and mind so the Word of God that you are about to read can flourish in you for God's glory. Pray that you continue to work with his grace. Let the words or your prayer flow from your mind through your heart. Try to "feel" what you are saying.
Is there anything that you would like to ask God at this moment? What graces does your heart desire? Talk to God about it.
Today, we ask for the grace of wisdom.
Now read the Sunday's Gospel:
Someone in the crowd said to Jesus, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the family inheritance with me.” But Jesus said to him, “Friend, who set me to be a judge or arbitrator over you?”
And Jesus said to the crowd, “Take care! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of possessions.”
Then Jesus told them a parable: “The land of a rich man produced abundantly. And he thought to himself, ‘What should I do, for I have no place to store my crops?’ Then he said, ‘I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.”’
“But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life is being demanded of you. And the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’ So it is with those who store up treasures for themselves but are not rich toward God.” (Luke 12:13-21)
The Word of God touches everyone differently. If there is anything that really stood out for you in this reading, meditate on it. Go to the depths of your heart and listen to what God is trying to say to you.
Next, let's spend some time with a couple of points that you may consider during this Sunday's Retreat:
1. "And I will say to my soul, ‘Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years;"
Notice how the rich farmer gives himself credit for everything he owns. He is 100% convinced that what he owns will provide for a very relaxing future.
In reality, everything that we have/own belongs to God. All the goods that the fields produce, the items that people make, our health, our work, and our spiritual gifts are gifts from God for us to use and manage for the benefit of others.
However, there is one thing that we own that is 100% ours – it is called sin.
Thus, reflect on your own understanding of ownership. How do you feel about the things and talents that you have? Do you credit God for them? Or yourself?
Do you realize that God wants you to get rid of the only thing that you own? Yes, God wants to take away your sin. Thus, think about how you understand the sacrament of reconciliation. Do you experience any challenges with it? If yes, what kind of challenges and why? What do you like the most about this sacrament?
2. “This very night”
This little statement indicates a sudden stop to what may be happening around us. Jesus did not have anything against the goods of this world; however, he wanted to emphasize the fact that our earthly existence is very short, and our actual existence is eternal. Therefore, we need to be more concerned about gathering the treasures for eternal life than for our earthly life.
Therefore, think about all the treasures you can bring to the Kingdom. Name them. Now think about everyone who helped you or will help you obtain this treasure. Who is on your list?
What does your list of treasures look like today? What would happen if today was “this very night” for you? Are you ready for your eternal life? If “yes,” why? If “no,” why?
You may end this retreat by identifying one item (it can be food, clothing, books, or something else that you may have that you really like and enjoy) and giving it away to someone else (e.g a person in need, or maybe a person that you don’t particularly like, but a person who could use what you are giving up). Let it be a sacrifice for you.
It is good to keep a personal journal in which reflections that stood out for you are recorded. The outcome of those Sunday Micro Retreats is good material that you can talk about in your spiritual direction.