Wisdom is the ability to understand our lives in the way that God would have us understand them.
When I was a young newly ordained priest I received a call from my Provincial.
When I answered the phone my heart skipped a beat because Provincials, just like bosses, never or rarely call just to say hello.
It usually means that you messed something up or that they want a favor.
Fortunately it was the later and I was assigned to substitute for a hospital chaplain.
My third day there I was called to the emergency room to anoint a man who had a heart attack.
I was told that it was not critical and to come when I could.
When I arrived the nurse was walking down the hall and said he’s over there.
I entered the room I found a man in his late 50's sitting up right on an examination table.
When I greeted him he did not respond in fact he didn't seem to be breathing.
I quickly anointed him and then I found the nurse and begged her to check on him. She looked at me as if I was crazy and slowly walked into the room.
Suddenly people came running from all over the ER and through God's grace this man was given a second chance.
The next 2 weeks I had the privilege of visiting him everyday and all I did was listen.
He had 2 houses and a boat
His kids were demanding and distant
The workers of his company always wanting more
His wife was angry that he was never home
He worried constantly about finding new work for his company.
I have 18 workers and their families to worry about .. that is a lot of mouths to feed.
He was filled with anger and hurt and didn't feel appreciated and so he held on very tightly to his possessions... he thought they would give him comfort.
The young man in the gospel was a good person.
The Lord looked on him with Love.
His desire for virtue was not just a fad he was going through.
He had tried to observe the God's law for years and was looking for the next step.
He did not come face to face with Jesus by chance but probably sought him out.
What do I need to do to inherit everlasting life he asked with a gleam in his eye?
He was filled with hope and so sincere, yet like the man in the hospital he held on so very tightly to his possessions..
He was afraid to let go and when Jesus suggested he sell all he have and give to the poor he went away sad.
You see he trusted is riches, he trusted his possessions more than he trusted Jesus.
A couple of years later a gentleman came up to me later in a shopping mall.
Do you remember me Father I'm your ER miracle.
In our conversation I came to find out that he had already had a second heart attack.
"I'm trying to let go Father it is just so hard."
Both the young man in the Gospel and the man in the hospital lacked wisdom.
They just couldn't seem to evaluate their choices in the light of what God wanted from them and what God wanted from them.
They had just stopped discerning and in a very real way became possessed by their possessions.
Did the Man own the houses and the business and the boat or did they own him?
Did the rich young man in the Gospel own his possession or did they own him?
Life just doesn't happen
Holiness just doesn't happen
Happiness just doesn't happen
All of us need the wisdom of God to make good life choices.
All of us need the courage to follow it.
Those of you who are still in college need wisdom to choose a major, that will use your God given talents, be fulfilling and contribute to the well being of others.
No small task indeed and that's why you drive the registrar crazy changing majors.
Those of you who are young need wisdom in choosing relationships, which bring out the best in you and enable you to experience the beauty of being in Love with someone.
Those of you who are about to graduate from college need the wisdom of God to know what you should be working for, what really is important.
Those of you who are parents need to examine yourselves continually adapting and changing your plans as your family changes and adapts.
All us need to continually evaluate our goals, dreams and yes even our possessions so that we can know what we need to hold onto and what we can let go of.
What is holding us back
What keeps us from being happy
What is keeping us from growing closer to our family and close to God
Why haven't we made more progress spiritually?
As the book of wisdom says
"I prayed, I pleaded and the spirit of wisdom came to me.
And all good things together came to me in her company"
Lord grant us the gift of Wisdom as we journey home to you.