Study: Recall a time when you were entrusted with power. How did you use it?
Pray: Ask the Lord for guidance over the things and situations in your control right now.
Serve: How can you help someone who is struggling with a decision of leadership? How can you offer solid support?
21st Sunday of the Year Readings
Take a look at the keys in your pocket. As you hold them, think about what they do:
- The doors they open
- The cars they open & start
- The authority and power they reveal
Keys allow us access and empower us with authority. Keys give us control over our physical world and they help us to use resources wisely and well. They are also symbols that speak to identity and purpose – just think about what happens when our keys are lost or taken from us….
In the first reading and the Gospel today we discover the power of God’s keys:
- Key of the House of David
- Keys of the Kingdom of Heaven
These promises to Eliakim and St. Peter are mighty – they will receive the power, authority,and responsibility from God lead and guide. Consider these three points:
Power: they receive the strength and ability to carry out the work entrusted to them. Power gives them resources and skills to accomplish great things. Without power they are weak; with God’s power they can do more than they ever dreamed possible.
Authority: these keys are a sign of leadership and respect. The keys they possess allow them to direct and command others. Those who hold the keys are followed; those who hold the keys stand before us and provide wisdom, insight, and vision.
Responsibility: “From everyone to whom much has been given, much will be required; and from the one to whom much has been entrusted, even more will be demanded.” (Luke 12:48b) With great power comes great responsibility, and those who have been given strength and ability are required to use it with wisdom. Indeed, having the keys of Authority are a burden to demonstrate transparency, accountability, and trust.
Again, look at the keys in your pocket. How do we use them? Today we might consider the gifts and talents God has given us: we have an opportunity at this moment to exercise our own power and authority with God’s guidance, knowing that one day the Lord will seek an accounting with what we have done.
May our own keys inspire us to live with conviction and direction – using the resources we have received with the insights offered by our faith in Jesus Christ. The Lord is the source of all keys, may we call upon him to help us use them!
Note: This post was first published on August 18, 2014.