Scripture Reading: Luke 16:19-31
In our scripture reading today, Jesus tells us a story that is still very much relevant in our time. The story of the rich man and Lazarus, a poor man. The bible says that everyday Lazarus went to the rich man’s door to look for crumbs from his table. The only thing Lazarus got out of his effort was that dogs would lick his sore. These, I believe were the rich man’s dogs. The rich man never gave anything to Lazarus; instead, Lazarus was the one giving to this rich man, because every day that Lazarus came around looking for leftovers, the rich man’s dogs fed on his sore. So, Lazarus gave to the rich man by feeding his dogs with his sore.
Hear St. Bede the Venerable, “He alone loves the Creator perfectly who manifests a pure, love for his neigbours ”. St. Teresa of Avila supports St. Bede when she says, “Though we do not have our Lord with us in bodily presence, we have our neighbour, who, for the ends of love and loving service is as good as our Lord himself”.
There are many Lazarus around us today. The question is, “Are we ignoring them just like the rich man did to the Lazarus of his time? Some rich men expend lots of money and resources on frivolities not considering the poor persons around their neigbourhood. Are you that type of person that cuts some amount of money from what you agreed to pay your workers or somebody that did some work for you; thinking it is your ability to bargain? That’s ungodly! The bible said, Lazarus died and was carried by angels to Abraham’s bosom, and after some time the rich man also died and went to hell. There in hell he wanted to continue taking from Lazarus by asking Abraham to send Lazarus to bring him water, but father Abraham said to him, “Remember my son, that in your life time you were given all the good things, while Lazarus got all the bad things. But now he is enjoying himself here, while you are in pain. Besides all that, there is a deep pit lying between us, so that those who want cross over from here to you cannot do so, nor can anyone cross over to us from where you are.”(Luke 16:25-26) The rich man lacked wisdom to use all the good things of life given to him to remove all the bad things Lazarus got. His wealth was not meant for him alone, but also for Lazarus, that is why God brought Lazarus to him.
Here is today’s word of wisdom, Proverbs 14:31 says, “If you oppress poor people, you insult the God who made them; but kindness shown to the poor is an act of worship.” So, do not ignore that Lazarus!
- We cannot say we are not guilty of ignoring so many Lazarus around us.
- Let us ask God for mercy for the many times we have failed to listen to the cry of the needy ones around us.
- Pray: Lord Jesus, as a Christian who represents you here in the world; I am to bring joy wherever I go. You represent joy and goodness, as the scripture said; you went about doing good and healing all that were sick. Give me the strength and power that I need to go everywhere sharing joy and happiness to all mankind whether Christians or non-Christians: so that all may experience you through such. Amen.
- Pray for all Christian leaders to know that the needy among their congregations should be cared for just as Christ cared for the five thousand men he fed.
- Pray for all needy people that God will raise helpers to help them.
- Pray for those in government to understand that it is God who put them there for the common good of those they lead.
Exercise: Think of a particular way you can be of help to someone and work towards achieving it.
Memory Verse: Proverbs 31:8-9