In all things, Put God First

Sirach 5:1-8
Do not set your heart on your wealth, nor say, “I have enough.” 
Do not follow your inclination and strength, walking according to the desires of your heart. 
Do not say, “Who will have power over me?” for the Lord will surely punish you. 
Do not say, “I sinned, and what happened to me?” for the Lord is slow to anger. 
Do not be so confident of atonement that you add sin to sin. 
Do not say, “His mercy is great, he will forgive the multitude of my sins,” for both mercy and wrath are with him, and his anger rests on sinners. 
Do not delay to turn to the Lord, nor postpone it from day to day; for suddenly the wrath of the Lord will go forth, and at the time of punishment you will perish. 
Do not depend on dishonest wealth, for it will not benefit you in the day of calamity.

Homily:
It is easy to take God for granted and ascribe victories to self. Especially when His love, mercy, grace and favor abounds.

It is easy for the flesh to weaken the spirit with endless insatiable desires.

It is easy to forget how fleeting life is, when we think we hold all the aces.

It is easy to undermine God’s role in our lives, and be blinded by hubris to the consequences of ingratitude.

It is easy to forgive and forget ourselves. Always justifying our actions and rationalizing its effects, without asking God for forgiveness and changing our ways. Our memory fails us, because of the lag between cause and effect.

It is easy to take offense and punish others, but our stiff judgment of others becomes the yardstick for God’s judgment of our own actions and the punishment that follows.

In all things, Put God First.

You will come to see that even though the choices can be hard (staying humble in spite of great victories, fasting in spite of great wealth, praying in spite of great winning streaks, commitment in spite of alternatives, gentleness in spite of great strength, forgiveness in spite of great authority), your life will have more meaning.