There is a story about a poor woman walking down Fifth Avenue in New York. She notices that a wealthy woman has lost her purse and can’t pay for a cab. The poor woman reaches into her pocket and pays the fare.
The rich woman is dumbfounded and insists that the taxi driver give the money back. The poor woman grabs the richer one’s arm and says: “Can’t you let a body do something now and then-just to stretch the soul?”
Faith helps us understand our place in the world. When we are free from possessions, it helps us when we see injustice, arrogance, poverty and sinfulness and gives us the ability to change these things for the love of Jesus. The rich woman could not understand the freedom the poor woman had to share. All she felt was her attachment to her own needs because her wealth was earthly.
The essence of the Christian life is after all the ability to see our material possessions for what they are: nothing, meaningless, temporary. What is rich in the eyes of God is our faithfulness to God from which we have no desire to separate but towards which we are always attracted.
Faith helps us take all we possess in the world and weigh it against the wealth of God’s love. “Alone before God the human being is always unique and unrepeatable, somebody thought of and chosen from eternity.” – JPII.
Faith, in the end, is the ability to “stretch the soul” in order to touch God.