Then the Lord said to him, “Now then, you Pharisees clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside you are full of greed and wickedness. You foolish people! Did not the one who made the outside make the inside also? But now as for what is inside you – be generous to the poor, and everything will be clean for you. (Luke 11:39-41)
Mr. Phillips built a mega dealership in front of a neighborhood, not caring that his tall parking lot lights were shining into children’s bedrooms. He cut down every tree that could have separated his dealership from the neighborhood so that he could park a few more cars. He refused to build a solid fence or wall so people who once had a view of trees from their living rooms now stared at parked cars. Since he was a prominent citizen of the town, the town also neglected to protect the neighborhood.
We all have stories of the privileged rich who don’t care about others. They are Pharisees who are greedy, wicked, and foolish. Though they are clean, well-dressed, and beautiful on the outside, their insides are filthy. Jesus asks that they be generous to the poor to make themselves clean, but the Pharisees don’t like His message.
Dearest Heavenly Father, I know you can read my heart. Help me be clean on the inside and show me if I have dirt to clean up. Give me opportunities to help the poor and love my neighbors. In Jesus’ Name I pray. Amen.