"When you hold a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind; blessed indeed will you be because of their inability to repay you." Today Jesus instructs us to be generous enough to serve others without expecting repayment. At least, without expecting to be repaid in THIS life. It's interesting that the Gospel concludes with Jesus' promise that if we follow this teaching, we "will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous." In other words, God will "repay" our generosity on earth by welcoming us into heaven. Really, what better investment could there possibly be?
It can be tempting to think of our money as purely our own. We work hard to earn it. Or we receive it from others who wanted US to have it. Or luck came our way (and too bad for you that it didn't come your way). We thus feel possessive of our money and often struggle with the idea of giving it away or lending it without hope of being paid back (with interest!). But today's Gospel challenges us with a different perspective. In essence, Jesus tells us to use our money for the sake of others, not just to assure our own earthly comfort. As difficult as this request may be, its important to remember that Jesus honors the sacrifice! This is why he promises repayment in heaven. He understands that it "costs" us a great deal to part with the security of using our money for ourselves alone. He understands that in caring for the poor, we risk putting ourselves in their company.
But God's ways are not the ways of the world. Instead of investing everything in a bank, Jesus asks us to invest in the poor. After all, no bank on earth can possibly provide the infinite rate of return that Jesus promises.