She had been so wicked that in all her life she had done only one good deed — given an onion to a beggar. So she went to hell. As she lay in torment she saw the onion, lowered down from heaven by an angel. She caught hold of it. He began to pull her up. The other damned saw what was happening and caught hold of it too. She was indignant and cried, “Let go — it’s my onion,” and as soon as she said, “My onion,” the stalk broke and she fell back into the flames.” — E. M. Forster in The Hill of Devi
When does the cost of an onion become too high?
Selfishness, selfcenteredness and egocentric behavior all seem more the norm rather than the exception in today’s society. But that come with a heavy price as illustrated in the quote above.
Life is about love, about relationships, and about sharing. The more we give the more we live. Every opportunity to share is another opportunity to become more alive and to experience even deeper joy.
Me, my, and mine are not large words. Yet, all of them are far heavier than we imagine. We would do well to remember, that the stalk of an onion cannot bear the weight of even one of them.
You are wondrous to see and know. Your glory outshines the purest gold or the clearest diamond.
Take away our pride in possessions, Father, and give us humble hearts of service and compassion. Help us not place our hope in the uncertainty of money, but in you, who graciously gives us everything we need.
Make us rich in good deeds and in helping others, which you have created us to do. Tune our minds and souls to the same frequency as yours so that we don’t overlook the poor, the hungry, and the destitute.
Focus our eyes on the opportunities that come our way every day to touch others with your grace and truth. Help us to avoid the dangers of wealth and to grasp the joys of service. Amen.
A prayer from M. Norvel Young, Co-Chairman, Board of Directors, Union Rescue Mission, taken from for they shall be fed, edited by Ronald J. Sider.