The Gift of Caring
“With righteousness he shall judge the poor, and decide with equity for the meek of the earth.” Isaiah 11:4
When Jesus says, “Blessed are the poor,” he is speaking not just of the poor economically but of each of us, his beloved brothers and sisters, when we experience our human fragility. That basic human weakness is never more evident than when people fall sick or face the reality of their death. Perhaps not so strangely, however, people seldom consider themselves “blessed” when weakness befalls them.
We want to help. We want to do something for people in need. We want to offer consolation to those who are in grief and alleviate the suffering of those who are in pain. There is obviously nothing wrong with that desire. It is a noble and graced filled desire. But unless we realize that God’s blessing is coming to us from those we want to serve, our help will be short lived, and eventually we may feel burned out.
How is it possible to keep nursing the sick when they are not getting better? How can we keep consoling the dying when their deaths only bring us more grief? The answer is that they all hold a blessing, a blessing that each of us needs to receive. Care giving is, finally, receiving God’s blessing from those to whom we give care.
Loving God, let me not tire of serving the poor.