© 2014 John Casimir O'Keefe

The Parable of the Greedy CEO

Jesus had just finished talking with the crowed that had gathered and was getting ready to kick back and relax, when someone from the back of the crowd asked, “Jesus, tell my greedy brother to give me part of what our father left to the family.”

Jesus looked at the man as said, “Really? You want me to get involved in your petty little greed-fest?”

Jesus turned to the crowd and said, “Everyone listen carefully, because what I am about to tell you is very important. To understand life, and the Divine, you need to close your heart to greed. It is so not healthy to define your life based on what you own, or think you own, or want to own. Greed is a poor way of defining your life. Even the least bit, the smallest amount, of greed will control you and bring you down in the end. Life is so much more than things, even when you have a great many thing.”

“Let me share with you a story: There was this greedy CEO of a major International Corporation who received a huge salary and bonuses based on how much the Corporation made in profit that year; the more the Corporation made, the bigger his bonus. Over the past he had done all he could to maximize profit, paying poor wages, laying off employees, cutting production costs, cutting the quality of the products, and using every tax loophole he could. One day he was wondering to himself, ‘If I only had more money, I could do so many things I have always wanted to do; I would be so much happier with more. How can I increase the profits to the Corporation so I can make a huge bonus at the end of this year?’ After thinking all day and into the evening, it hit him – Inversion. He would re-incorporate the company overseas in order to reduce the tax burden on the Corporate profit. This would allow the Corporation to save hundreds of millions in tax liabilities and pad his pocket with a multi-million dollar bonus and the Stockholders with large dividends; everyone would be happy, except the workers. He looked into the mirror and smiled. He thought, with this little move, I will have so much more money and live the life I always wanted without all this pressure. He was excited, because he would finally live a better life in the sun.”

“It was late, and he was tired. His plan would be to get the ball rolling first thing in the morning. As he started to fall asleep he heard the voice of the Divine, ‘You’re such a jerk, tonight is your last night on earth and who will get that fat bonus check?’ This is what happens when you live your life for greed; you are always pushing for more things, thinking that will make  happy. But all it does is make you miss out on living, on helping others. You keep saying to yourself, ‘Only if I just had a little more I would be happier.’ Never once realizing that a simple life is better. When you fill your life with things, you have no room for the Divine. Dump the things and make room for the Divine.”


NOTE: This is part of a series entitled “New Parables” – Click on the tag “New Parables” and others will be shared with you.

Based on Luke 12:13-21

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