Heirs of the Kingdom….
It is the poor, not the rich, who are heirs of the Kingdom of God:
Listen, my beloved brothers. Did not God choose those who are poor in the world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom that he promised to those who love him? But you dishonored the poor person. Are not the rich oppressing you? And do they themselves not haul you off to court? Is it not they who blaspheme the noble name that was invoked over you? -James 2:5-7, NAB
In our world, we look up to those that have achieved financial success – while looking down on those who are poor. But St. James tells us that the poor are the heirs of the Kingdom, so who should we really be looking up to?
What have the rich done for us lately? There are a few exceptions to the rule, but generally speaking, their only focus is gaining more wealth. They may have a pocket full of cash, but what did they have to do to get it?
Meanwhile, some of the kindest, most genuine people are poor. They would be willing to give you the shirt off their back, even if it’s the only shirt they have. They give even when they have little to offer. They have survived through the help of others, so they are willing to help others in return.
With little money to be corrupted by, the poor are more open to faith. They learn to depend on God for everything. They put their lives in HIs hands because, frankly, they have few other options.
The poor no longer worry about a fancy, new car, that big promotion (with a big raise to go with it), a large home, or any material desires. Their hope turns towards heaven. They will not be heirs to much in this life, so they focus their efforts as heirs of the Kingdom of God.
We need to stop admiring the rich who have gained much in this world, and start following the examples of the poor who have their eyes turned towards heaven. It is better to be poor in this world and heirs of the Kingdom of God.