“No one can serve two masters.” Mt. 6:24
The reality for most people today is that we have many masters. We each have lots of demands on our time and energy. We juggle several different projects at the same time and all of them are important. Multitasking is a way of life for most of us as. We talk on the phone while cooking dinner. We listen to the radio while driving. We wash the dishes while planning the next activity. Our lives are often so full that we simply move from serving one master to another.
But Jesus says we cannot serve two masters. Is this teaching just outdated?
I don’t think so. Jesus teaching has practical relevance for us today.
First, it challenges us to be aware of what we are doing. Service requires attention. In order to know what master we are serving, we need to know what we are doing. Jesus forces us to ask ourselves, am I sleepwalking through life?
Second, this teaching of Jesus forces us to dig deeper. Why we are doing anything? Are we driven by obsession or fear or merely a sense of duty to get the laundry done, or are we acting out of love for God and for our family? Even the most ordinary chores can be acts of love that serve God, our true master.
Jesus is teaching us a key to living a life of freedom and joy. If we pay attention to what we are doing and why we are doing it we recognize how often we are driven by our own compulsions and obsessions, rather than love of God and neighbor. Only then can we begin to act freely. Jesus’ teaching is as true today in our multitasking culture as it was in ancient Galilee.
Dcn. Lincoln A. Wood