We Often Regret Greed, But Never Generosity

Beggar falling asleep on the street with a cap for collecting money
Beggar falling asleep on the street with a cap for collecting money

As Christians, we are directly called by Jesus, through the beatitudes, to take care of the less fortunate. So often we make excuses to avoid this. When was the last time you regretted giving someone a gift? I'll bet that's a harder question to answer than: when was the last time you regretted taking more than you should have?

We so often regret acts of greed, but we never regret being generous--actually generous not generosity dosed with greed (i.e. a gift rather than a loan). Why then are we so predisposed to act in an irrationally greedy manner. We tend to have this take, take, take mentality when there are more than sufficient resources to go around. According to the World Food Clock, more than 32% of all food produced is wasted.

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This is driven by our consumerist lifestyles. While 'things' are good, experiences are vastly better. And few things are as satisfying as helping others.

Often I hear people say, "oh, I won't give to the homeless because they'll just use the money on drugs or booze." That is a flippant excuse to be selfish. Frankly, what the beggar does with the money isn't my concern. Who am I to judge them for using drugs or alcohol to dull the pain inherent in their lifestyle? Who am I to say that they will not be one of those who would actually use it to better their situation?

All I know is that many people are one or two paychecks away from being homeless. It isn't necessarily indicative of poor choice after poor choice, but it is rather an indictment of a systemic problem. Let us heed our call to help others and do some random act of kindness for a stranger today (and, with luck, every day).