It is 1st March 2018. The readings are from Jeremiah 17:5-10; and the Gospel from Luke 16:19-31. What does our wealth and riches do to our hearts and souls? It makes us relaying on the fleeting power, influence and prominent and influential people leaving God consciously. “I the Lord test the mind and search the heart, to give to all according to their ways, according to the fruit of their doings.” (Jer.17:10). As long as we trust in God, our riches and wealth does not enter into our heart and inner being. What we acquire in this world must not separate us from God and from the poor. We need to make conscious effort everyday to examine our consciences whether it has fallen for wealth and riches and moving away from God. In every one of us, there is poor and unattended person resides deep in us. When we trust God totally, we truly become rich. The time of Lent reminds us how distanced we are from God and the poor because our choices and places of honour we have given to the wealth and money in our lives. It is during this sacred liturgical time, God searches our hearts intensely and deeply and rewards accordingly. The responsorial Psalm intercedes, “Happy are they who put their trust in the Lord.” (Ps.39:5). The Gospel rightly points out that there is a poor rich person and the rich poor person in every one of us. The story of the rich and the poor Lazarus so alive at every doorstep of our lives. Many of us have forgotten our recent past that we were Lazarus one time. The wealth and riches have blinded our spiritual vision to see what we ought to see around us. Some of us have taken an attitude of the rich person in the Gospel ignoring the poor and treating the poor less a human being. The indifference and arrogance that comes with the riches and wealth destroys the health of the soul by trusting those influential and prominent people more than God. The poor are the visible face of God. God cannot be honoured and worshiped when our hearts have no place for the poor. The neglect and indifference shown to the poor is taken so seriously by God. We can never reach Heaven without reaching out to the poor and the needy. Our worship and celebrations are cemented only by the charity shown to all human beings. Do we have a place for the poor in our heart? Then God has place for you and me. May you have a full of blessings.

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