Jesus makes the statement to those trying to trap Him: “repay to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs to God.” This wisdom leaves the Pharisees and Herodians speechless. But this prompts us to ask ourselves, what does belong to God? What belongs to Caesar?
Everything we have is a gift from God, our very life, the families we belong to, our earthly possessions. God had blessed us with all these. So what does God want from us? He wants all of you! He desires that we surrender ourselves to Him in every aspect of our lives. We all know this is hard to do, because we believe falsely that we are in control. We believe everything is counting on us to care for it. But then we realize that only through God’s grace working in and through us does the world make sense. When we accept God’s grace and put it to work in our lives, then we can understand how loving God is. Then we can surrender ourselves to Him, holding nothing back. Then we can give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and do it in a way that doesn’t conflict with God or His Church.
And what belongs to Caesar? We owe the structures (family, government) of this world our respect and obedience, as long as they are not in conflict with God’s structures (the Church). We are called to be good citizens, obeying just laws, voting with a properly formed conscience, (one in union with God’s laws) and caring for our fellow citizens. We will be voting soon in an important election. It’s time to ask ourselves which party supports the things God finds important – life? Which party supports a culture of death? Inform yourself before you vote, then vote as a true Catholic. This is one important aspect of giving to God what belongs to God.