It was a hot and humid day in July. I was driving to the local grocery store because the heat had made my bananas go from yellow to brown overnight. My air conditioner in my car was on high, but it still wasn’t cooling me down. Suddenly, the car in front of me signaled that it was pulling off. I pressed on the brakes and slowed down. Out of the corner of my eye I saw several teenagers standing in the sweltering, Summer sun. They weren’t playing, goofing off, or hanging around though. They weren’t drinking, smoking, gossiping, or looking at their cell phones. They were working on a porch.
I recognized them immediately as one of the church work camps. For more years than I can remember these young men and women have volunteered their Spring and Summer vacations to come here and help repair the homes of poor people. I smiled when I saw them there sweating, straining, and working hard to do some good in this world. While the news headlines were so full of murder, hate, and violence, these young people were doing their best to share some love and light with others. In my heart and mind I heard the words once again: “I was hungry and you gave me food…I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me.” (Matt 25:35)
There is so much good we can do in this life. There are so many people we can help. There is so much love we can share. And as long as there is life, there is more to do. Whether it is repairing a house, sharing a smile, offering a hug, adopting a dog, visiting the sick, giving to charity, praying for others, sharing a kind word, or doing any act of goodness, every single thing we do is precious in the eyes of Heaven.
God loves us all so much and His greatest wish is for us to love each other as well. Choose to love then. Chose to love and you will have joy. Choose to love and you will share joy. Choose to love and you will help others and make this world a better place. There is no greater way to live and there is always more to do. May God bless and guide you always.
Joseph J. Mazzella