“How far that little candle throws his beams! So shines a good deed in a weary world.”
~ William Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice
As I heated up some soup for my lunch at work on this last day of 2013, I became very sad listening to a conversation that happens far too often – begun by someone ranting about how those who receive welfare or depend on social security or receive any kind of assistance are undermining what he has or might have or should have.
Why is there any reason to feel threatened by the safety nets or safe guards that attempt to alleviate poverty and injustice, create better working conditions, ensure education and healthcare for all, and offer help to those who have been caught in cycles of addiction or abuse or any number of “but for the grace of God …” situations?
Does it not serve all to try to lift up those who have fallen on bad times even when it might be because of their own behavior or choices? If starving children are fed, does it matter that someone out there is “too lazy to work”? If another life is helped to reach its highest and happiest potential, does it not give the world and every one of us who live in it more not less? Greed has never made the world richer in its heart; judgment has never cleared the conscience of the soul. Is compassion not the creativity each of us has to offer?
“Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared.”
Neither is the quality of any one life diminished by the benefits another receives.
“When we are generous in welcoming people and sharing something with them—some food, a place in our homes, our time—not only do we no longer remain poor: we are enriched. I am well aware that when someone needing food knocks at your door, you always find a way of sharing food; as the proverb says, one can always ‘add more water to the beans’! Is it possible to add more water to the beans?…Always?…And you do so with love, demonstrating that true riches consist not in materials things, but in the heart!”
~ Pope Francis
Below is a re-post from last year, with heartfelt thanks to all who have followed my reflections, supported my writing and artwork, and lit the way for me and others to live and create in the best way possible.
I wish you all abundant blessings for the New Year
and far, far beyond!
May you and yours and all you love flourish and grow
and find comfort in continuation …
©Artwork and writing, unless otherwise indicated, are the property of Diane M Denton. Please request permission to reproduce or post elsewhere with a link back to bardessdmdenton. Thank you.