Friday, June 8, 2012

Doctrine and Covenants 56:16-17

"Wo unto you rich men, that will not give your substance to the poor, for your riches will canker your souls; and this shall be your lamentation in the day of visitation, and of judgment, and of indignation: The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and my soul is not saved!
Wo unto you poor men, whose hearts are not broken, whose spirits are not contrite, and whose bellies are not satisfied, and whose hands are not stayed from laying hold upon other men's goods, whose eyes are full of greediness, and who will not labor with your own hands!"
Doctrine and Covenants 56:16-17

I like these verses because they show clearly that it isn't inherently evil to be rich or inherently good to be poor... but as with all things, it depends on how we act towards our fellow human beings.  And we're all rich *and* poor in different ways, I think.  Even if we aren't hoarding money, we sometimes hoard knowledge, or kindness, or trust... only doling out tiny amounts to those that we feel are worthy.  And even if we aren't financially poor, sometimes we expect others to give us other things without working for them... like trust, or a promotion, or a place in line.
I think it is hard on both sides... hard to be generous when you know some people will take advantage of it, and hard to not take advantage when it will get you a better situation without all that hard work.  But let's try to learn from these verses today.  Let's be generous with our riches, whether they are monetary or otherwise.  And let's also try not to take advantage of other people, and expect things without working for them, monetary or otherwise.  Building a Zion society requires us all to trust each other to do the right things, wherever we are.  Today, let's be trusting, and trustworthy.

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