It is our life to help the needy. There is something very beautiful in helping. But the Lord tells us, we must be ready to distinguish between the needy and the foolish. When the foolish asks for help, they should not be helped. Why? Because in cooperating with their foolishness, we actually tolerate it. We no longer challenge them to become better.
There is a Chinese saying that goes, “if you give fish to a poor man, you give him food for one day; but, if you give him a fishing rod, you give him food for a lifetime.” The poor man may not appreciate it but the fishing rod is a challenge to realize his dignity as a child of God.
Today, the Lord reminds us to help the needy, clothe the naked, and feed the hungry. But the Lord is also telling us to be wise. When you see something foolish going on, learn to say NO. To be a Christian means to say YES to God but to be a Christian also means saying NO to foolishness. In saying NO to the foolish, we help them realize their self-worth. In refusing help, the five wise virgins actually made the foolish virgins realize what they can do.
Let us pray for a soft heart for the needy but let us also pray never to compromise with foolishness. Let us pray for the grace to be compassionate, to be gentle to those who truly need our help. But let us also recognize foolishness and challenge the foolish to rise up according to the capacity that God gave them.
Jesus In My Heart