Focal Passage: 1 Timothy 6:3-19
On the surface it would appear that the lives of Lady Diana of Wales and Mother Teresa of Calcutta could not be further apart. During her years as princess, Diana was one of the wealthiest and most photographed women in the world. Many believed she was also the most beautiful. We might assume that there was little that Diana could not buy.
Unfortunately, the life of Lady Diana was not always so happy and care free. She and her husband would divorce in 1996 after years of acrimony and unfaithfulness, and she would die a most tragic death on Aug. 31, 1997. The petite Albanian known as Mother Teresa dedicated her life to serving Jesus as a Catholic nun. As a result of her “call within the call,” she founded the Missionaries of Charity. Today this group numbers in the thousands, with a presence in 133 countries. In 1979 Mother Teresa was awarded the highly acclaimed Nobel Peace Prize. She refused to pocket the $192,000 prize, however, insisting that the money be given to the poor of India. For all their differences, though, the lives of Lady Diana and Mother Teresa were remarkably intertwined. The former princess was actively involved in charity work, including work to help the homeless and those suffering from leprosy and AIDS. Mother Teresa was the undisputed vanguard of the homeless and poor, particularly those suffering from leprosy. Ironically, they would die less than one week apart. As the world was watching on TV the funeral service for Lady Di, we would also learn of and mourn the loss of the little nun named Teresa. They would finally meet in June 1997, just months before their respective deaths.
Today’s text speaks of the potential trap of money and wealth. Not that money is evil, but the unbridled “love” of it will cause all kinds of pain and corruption and death. The better choice is to pursue godliness (v. 6, 11) through a relationship with Jesus Christ, and to be rich in our service to others (v. 18).