10-18-2020Gospel Meditation© LPi

Nobody enjoys paying taxes. Despite our displeasure in being forced to do so, we also realize that the monies generated from taxes allows governments to provide essential services for its people. Corruption really gets our goat, however. When we witness malfeasance, overspending, irresponsibility, and dishonesty in governmental spending, the grave injustices make an already unpleasant and arduous task even more difficult. The inappropriate distribution and use of hard-earned monies can leave a person quite angry and disconnected. It’s bad enough the government wants something from me, now God does, too?

God is not concerned necessarily with our money, although its proper use does factor into our faith life. As the payment of secular taxes speaks of our allegiance to the government, our return to God speaks of our allegiance to God. All of creation, even the entire universe, is fashioned in the image and likeness of God. What speaks to God and has meaning and relevance to him? All of creation and indeed our very selves! God delights in us and when we present ourselves back to him, he delights even more! As the payment of secular taxes is designed to secure the equitable distribution of goods and services to all people, so is our return of ourselves to God in gratitude meant to advance God’s kingdom here on earth.

When our exclusive and sincere allegiance is given to God, God can use us to set things right and straight again. The wounds of sin distort our relationship and disorder our world. By giving ourselves and all of creation back to God in gratitude, we acknowledge the proper Creator and Author of life for who He is and devote our labors exclusively to God’s kingdom and the justice, peace, or order God envisions. In giving back to God all that belongs to God, we set the axis of our lives correctly and put our priorities in proper order. All of our relationships, especially with God, our brothers and sisters, and all of creation are perceived more clearly as they really are. Using, accumulating, wasting, exploiting, hording, and self-preservation are no longer necessary.