Who paid attention to what St. Paul said to the Galatians? Neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts. The only thing that counts:
Faith working through love.
Lord Jesus said that the heavenly Father made both the outside and the inside. Outside gets dirty, we wash it, take a bath, etc. Inside gets dirty—what do we do? Give alms.
¿Que indica eso? “Give alms.”
Not as hard to understand as we might think. Very straightforward in fact.
Anyone ever heard of St. Francis of Assisi? Little guy. Italian. Pope named himself after him.
St. Francis loved God, trusted God, wanted only God. Francis believed that everything the Lord Jesus said is true. The heavenly Father provides for the flowers of the field and the birds of the air, who neither toil nor spin, and He will certainly provide for us. The Father’s eyes are on the sparrow; He knows how many hairs are growing on our heads. Why worry? The Lord will take care of tomorrow; the Lord will take care of the rest of today. His will be done!
So St. Francis gave away everything he did not need. Then he gave away everything he needed. By doing all that, he cleaned his insides. Because all he wanted was God, and he did not want anything less than God.
God will take care of everything. Everything that I think belongs to me really doesn’t. It really belongs to the next person I see who could make good use of it. I am actually the UPS guy for all these people, employed by the Lord to deliver all the goods I have to the individuals who can make good use of them. Talk about logistics!
Let’s go one step farther. The most precious thing that I have is actually not a ‘thing.’ The most precious thing I have is my love. My genuine love for others: esteeming them, warmly engaging them, cultivating compassion for them, offering them true Christian friendship.
Guess what? None of this is ‘mine,’ either. True, constant, firm love comes from God, comes from the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ. It comes from Him into my heart for one reason: So that I will give it away. So that I will lavishly love, helping others bear their burdens, expecting nothing in return. Because indeed the greatest gift I myself can receive is to know someone worth loving. And every human being is worth loving.
Then the whole lesson about giving alms comes to its final conclusion. Because we discover that the more Christian love we give, the more we have to give. The Sacred Heart of Jesus flows like an inexhaustible fountain of love. Loving with Christian love is like making an investment that pays 1000% interest.
So, to summarize…’Give alms’ means: Love my neighbor, and give my neighbor everything I have, including what I need to survive. Then I will wind up as rich as poor St. Francis.