28th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Gospel: Lk 17, 11-19
There's a story of two women who died and were at the waiting room before they go straight to heaven. The first was a learned, educated woman, the other, a poor one.
The rich woman told the other, "I heard that to enter heaven you need to present St. Peter the books you produced on earth that benefited others. So I studied and studied and produced books on education. Have you produced a series of books?"
"No, except this small one," the poor woman replied shamefully.
Then St. Peter came in asked them to submit their books. "Give me time to review them," he said, and went out of the waiting room. "I'll surely get to heaven now," said the rich woman.
Moments later, St. Peter came back. "I've reviewed your books. Some will go straight to heaven, the others, remain here at the waiting room." So he called the names of those who passed, among them was the poor woman.
The rich woman, not on the list, complained to St. Peter, "I've produced a library of books in my lifetime while this woman just made a small one. How come she goes to heaven and I don't?"
St. Peter answered, "My dearest, I know you made a thousand books, but this woman produced a book that contained the word, "Thank you." Every time she received kindness from another, she would write "Thank you"'; and every time a person would thank her, she would also write it down. So, she is entitled to enter heaven because her books contains a thousand "thanks" for the people in her life."
And the woman said, "Oh no, I wrote the wrong books."
Much have been said about thanks, sometimes, they come in cheaply, but most often, they come straight from the heart.
Saying thanks opens our worlds and let grace flow in others and in ourselves. Moreover, the greatest act of thanksgiving is a life transformed to goodness and glory of God.