Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.
One of the worst nautical disasters in British history was the 1859 wreck of the Royal Charter steam clipper. Hammered by hurricane winds and thrown upon the rocks, an estimated 450 people were killed. There were only thirty-nine survivors.
Among the passengers were gold miners who had struck it rich in Australia and were now returning to England. Many of them died weighed down by belts loaded with gold.
Their gold, far from ensuring their future, might actually have contributed to their deaths. Even worse, their greed likely prevented them from helping others. Not a single woman or child was saved from the ship.
Greed is a terrible thing, a corrupting thing, that can blind us to our real needs and certainly to the needs of others. If there is a no truer love than laying down one’s life for one’s friends, how much truer is it that we should lay down belts of gold in order to save the lives of women and children?
Sweet Freedom in Action
We should not put our trust in riches, but in our faith, which promises a brighter future than gold can ever deliver. Today, take stock of your possessions and take note of those things that might be dragging you down or distracting you from living a more abundant spiritual life. Remember that your real life jacket is your faith.
Note: The author of this article has included commentary that expresses an opinion and analysis of the facts.