“But God said to him, ‘You fool! You will die this very night. Then who will get it all?'”
This Week’s Top Scrooge – August 31, 2007
How many church sermons will include the story of Leona Helmsley and her dog, Trouble, this Sunday?
In case you missed it, Trouble…her pet…inherited $12 million. And for good measure, Trouble’s “fortunes” won’t be over even after her life ends. “I direct that when my dog, Trouble, dies, her remains shall be buried next to my remains in the Helmsley mausoleum,” she ordered. And she left another $3 million to ensure that final resting place is well maintained, including money for a yearly wash or steam-cleaning.
Twelve million dollars. That’s two more million dollars than two of her grandchildren are getting combined ($5 million each) and $12 million more than her other two grandchildren are getting…because they are getting zippo as in nada, nothing, and zilch.
I don’t make this stuff up, folks. Read the online story at CityNews.ca if you want.
If this is not a modern day parable to be told to congregations everywhere on Sunday, then I don’t know what is.
Now, I don’t know Helmsley personally, but apparently she already had the reputation before her death last month of being quite the scrooge. Therefore, considering her previous rap and this latest revelation, she is awarded This Week’s Top Scrooge dis-honor posthumously.
While I’m having some fun with this, I am also sad. It’s tragic to hear about what some people put their stock in. Yes, Helmsley did give money away to charities, but that doesn’t take the sting out of knowing that the woman more than likely is now suffering for eternity. Instead of hearing about any relationship with God she might have had we are left with learning more about the “Queen of Mean,” as she was known in many circles.
How sad…how very sad, indeed.
A friend of mine emailed me some verses this week with part of his message regarding the $12-million-inheritance-to-dog story reading: “it kinda recalls the passage in Luke 12: 13-21, and that you really can’t take it with you…God does have a fun sense of humor, you know???”
Well, I am sure He does. Meanwhile, from Luke:
Then someone called from the crowd, “Teacher, please tell my brother to divide our father’s estate with me.”
Jesus replied, “Friend, who made me a judge over you to decide such things as that?”
Then he said, “Beware! Don’t be greedy for what you don’t have. Real life is not measured by how much we own.
“And he gave an illustration: “A rich man had a fertile farm that produced fine crops. In fact, his barns were full to overflowing.
So he said, ‘I know! I’ll tear down my barns and build bigger ones. Then I’ll have room enough to store everything.
And I’ll sit back and say to myself, My friend, you have enough stored away for years to come. Now take it easy! Eat, drink, and be merry!’
“But God said to him, ‘You fool! You will die this very night. Then who will get it all?’
“Yes, a person is a fool to store up earthly wealth but not have a rich relationship with God.” – Luke 12:13-21