This homily was delivered at Sacred Heart Parish in Cebu.

I was standing in line at a coffee shop the other day with a friend of mine, and I noticed that after paying for our coffee at the counter, my friend immediately dropped all the change he received into the tip box without bothering to count the coins.

“That’s really generous of you,” I remarked.

My friend shrugged his shoulder and said, “To be honest, I just don’t like carrying loose change.”

That reminds me of one of the parables we just heard today: The Parable of the Lost Coin. Between the better known Parables of the Lost Sheep and the Prodigal Son, our Lord asks his listeners:

“What woman having ten coins and losing one
would not light a lamp and sweep the house,
searching carefully until she finds it?”

The honest answer to that question these days may well be: “Very few!”

With the exception of those who are in need, most people I know, just like my friend at the coffee shop, would not waste their time looking for a single missing coin, not to mention lighting a lamp and sweeping a house. That’s because very few people put any premium on loose change these days. Loose change is considered to have little value, if any. Loose change is disposable change, something you drop into the tip box without any second thought, perhaps partially out of generosity, but mostly out of convenience. Like my friend, most people would prefer not to bother carrying loose change.

That got me thinking. Aren’t we lucky that God isn’t like most of us? Aren’t we blessed that God does not consider us loose change? That is what the Parable of the Lost Coin teaches us: ours is a God who values every single person and refuses to think of anyone–including, believe it or not, the worst of sinners–as having little or no value. For God, no one is loose change. No one is disposable. When He loses us, He will feel the pinch, and He will go out of His way to find us. And just like the shepherd and the father in the other two parables, He will not stop, He will not give up, until He finds us.

For me, through the Parable of the Lost Coin, our Lord is inviting us to do two things: First, he is inviting us to be grateful, grateful for God’s boundless love and mercy, so that every person, every single one of us, including those that we ourselves tend to look down on, is very much worth searching for. Believe it, the Lord will rummage through all the corners of the world in search of every single person because for him, no one is loose change.

The second invitation is for us to examine ourselves and the way we treat other people in our lives. Are there people in our lives that we have been treating like loose change? People that, for some reason, we see little worth in, people we, in one way or another, consider disposable, people we are not willing to waste time on because we believe we have better things to do. If there are such people in our lives, our Lord is inviting us to take a second look at them, to see them through his loving eyes, so that we may recognize their true worth and treat them appropriately.

Dear friends, no one is loose change.

12 replies on “NO ONE IS LOOSE CHANGE”

Welcome back, Fr J! Thanks for this insightful homily. Here’s my two-coins’ worth.

So much to be grateful for: God made us; we are His. Each of us is precious to Him, He can’t bear to see any of us roll away, stray and get lost. He goes to great lengths to patiently seek us out and with great joy take us back. Most of all, He redeemed all of us with His ultimate sacrifice out of love for us.

In response, we could start sharing with all we meet that unconditional, compassionate love with which we have been blessed by Him.

Next time, I feel like a “loose change” … I will be grateful.. knowing that this loving God searches for me… lights up His path towards me, sweeps thru my darkness…to find me… and to hold me!

Yes, no one is loose change. God never stopped loving us. And I feel blessed to have such a loving Father who never considered me as loose change despite my sinfulness. I was lost & He found me. Forever grateful.
Thank you Lord for embracing me with your love.
Thank you Fr. J for the gift of your vocation?

Yes, no one is loose change. God never stopped loving us. And I feel blessed to have such a loving Father who never considered me as loose change despite my sinfulness. I was lost & He found me. Forever grateful. Thank you Lord for embracing me with your love. Thank you Fr. J for the gift of your vocation.?

Thank you Fr. J for bringing back Pins. I thought there was a techno glitz depriving me of Pins. The parables today make me look at how I treat people I hold in contempt (public officials). My language has become rude and insolent. I am becoming violent in words and thought. If I keep it up, soon I will be doing violent acts. Our Lord hate sin but loves the sinner. To be God’s child, I must learn to take this kind of attitude though difficult to do.

Glad you’re back, Fr. J. Thanks for letting me see the value of the lost coin. I have heard different takes on the parables of the lost sheep, the lost coin, the prodigal son. We all have to be found. Not because we are lost but because to God, there is no loose change, not a sheep left to wander in the wild, not a son who can’t be forgiven. God’s name is Pag-ibig!

Yes, we are all precious in God’s eyes. He is waiting for us with His open arms to bring us to heaven inspite of our sins & mess in our life. He is ready with His merciful love for us. We only have to respond with humility thanks & praises and welcome Him to our open hearts.

Thank you! Having gotten physically handicapped with back pain these past few years, i see myself having become ”Loose change”. Some of my old friends do visit or call but i can no longer socialise as I used to or offer the same service as I used to and more and more I live in solitude. I enjoy the space of peace and quiet but I guess I feel left out of much of life. What to do when you become “ loose change?”

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