33rd Sunday of Ordinary Time

Our Sunday Gospel is familiar to many of us. (Matthew 25: 14 – 30)

It is headed as ‘The Parable of the Talents’ and is in many Gospel editions.

It includes the line, “But the one who had received the one talent went off and dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money.(v. 18)

TradeMe is New Zealand’s largest online auction and classifieds website, where you can bid for everything from a pair of socks to a holiday house! The site was founded in 1999 by a young New Zealand entrepreneur, Sam Morgan. Morgan sold the enterprise in 2006 for $700 million dollars!

One of the more notable auctions happened in May 2009. The advertisement read, “Buy a Tractor and get a 20-acre farm for free.” Purchase of the tractor did come with one rather unusual added feature: a farm, the 8.1h block in the Catlins was an added bonus for whoever wins the tractor auction.

TradeMe lists has one of its busiest times of the year being immediately after Christmas – the online site is flooded with unwanted Christmas presents!

Lawnmowers, hair dryers, air fryers, cookware set, electric razors – the list is endless!

So, when does a present become a gift? When does it cease to hold the attribute of giftedness? When can it be hidden in the garden?

Have you ever held onto a gift, not because of any need you have for the gift but rather because of the one who has given you the gift!

Each time you open the cardboard and espy the unneeded blender, or perhaps open the wardrobe and see the bathroom robe, which is not your colour – memories of the one who gave you the gift flood the memory and the heart.

I suggest this is the true purpose of the gift – to re-member.

When my God has flooded me with the gift of words of the writer, or the palette of the artist, or the green fingers of the gardener, then these words, colours and green fingers offer me the opportunity to remember and to sing as the Psalmist sings:

“They are more precious than gold,
than much pure gold;
they are sweeter than honey,
than honey from the comb.” (19:10)

The intriguing by-line which accompanies this image reads, “Must have kitchen tools: 10 amazing kitchen tools to make your life easy.”

If only life could, indeed, be made easy through the purchase of kitchen tools?!!