There is a saying that a good story can change our lives. In fact, when we were children, stories were a gateway to understanding the world and learning things. We learned values and lessons through stories. That is why Jesus used stories, as he was an excellent storyteller. Among the many lessons:
- He said that the kingdom of God is like a mustard seed
- He explained that there is evil because the devil planted the weeds among the wheat
- He said that in Judgment, the sheep will be separated for the goat
- He said to always be prepared and not be like foolish virgins who did not bring extra oil for the lamps
- He said the only treasure that matters is the treasure in heaven.
In the Gospel, we hear of how Jesus exaggerated things to drive a point. On one hand, he used a very rich man who had so much and dined sumptuously every day. On the other hand, there was Lazarus who was so poor, miserable and so visible in the eyes of the rich man. In the end, the rich man went to hell and Lazarus went to heaven. Why? Because the rich man did not care at all for his neighbour.
Three things we remember for us to be able to help the poor:
- The words of Christ, “Whatever you do to the least of your brethren, you do unto me.” This is also the basis for eternal life.
- The only treasure we can bring to heaven is the kindness we have shown others. The rest of the earthly treasures, we just all leave behind.
- We too, remember the words in Proverbs: He who gives to the poor, lends to the Lord. In other words, God, who cannot be outdone in generosity, blesses those who bless the poor.
That is why we always pray that we may truly help the poor. While money is the easiest and fastest way to do so, let us also remember the saying:
“If you give a man a fish, you feed him for a day. If you teach a man to fish, you feed him for a lifetime.”