During Holy Week, we will be reading the Suffering Servant prophecies from Isaiah for our first readings. They are some of the most moving readings ever. Today is the first oracle of the Servant of the Lord from Isaiah 42.
In today’s Gospel reading from John 12, Mary, the sister of Martha and Lazarus, anoints the feet of Jesus with costly perfumed oil. Judas Iscariot objects, saying, “Why was this oil not sold for three hundred days’ wages and given to the poor?” Jesus replies, “You always have the poor with you, but you do not always have me.”
There have always been poor people. And there always will be. But why? After all, God could end all poverty in the blink of an eye. I believe it all stems from two things: the fall of man, and free will. Material poverty is one thing. But I believe we’re all “poor in spirit” to one degree or another. We have a Christian duty to help the poor. But let’s always remember that that doesn’t just mean the materially poor. Always having the poor presents us with endless opportunities to be a blessing to others.
Father, give us a generous spirit, that we may minister to all the poor. Amen.
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