Monday of the Eleventh Week in Ordinary Time
(II Corinthians 6:1-10; Matthew 5:38-42)
Acteva is a company that ostensibly helps non-profit organizations with Internet services. Recently, however, a number of the organizations that Acteva supposedly helps have found themselves swindled of their monies. Left discouraged, such organizations could hardly be blamed for feeling a bit skeptical when they hear Jesus’ message in today’s gospel.
Jesus exhorts his listeners to open their wallets to those needing assistance. Does he mean that one should risk losing the necessities of life? Such a radical interpretation probably misrepresents Jesus who shows concern about people’s general welfare. Nevertheless, he knows that people tend to so preoccupy themselves with money that they lose sight of the value of a human being. Jesus only insists that his followers be generous with those in real need.
It is hard to lend when we intuit that the borrower will not pay us back. Perhaps we should not lend what we cannot afford to lose or, better, from the beginning consider loans as gifts and ask borrowers to “pay it forward” (give it to another in need). In any case Jesus wants us to help the poor with our money as well as with our prayers.