In school we had an English poetry collection prescribed as a text book in Class X. The first poem in the book was 'Abou Ben Adam' by Leigh Hunt . The poem carried a beautiful message that Love for mankind is the love for God which surpasses all kinds of rituals and worship of God in fulfilling one's life.
A few days back, I read the short story ' Where love is, God is' by Leo Tolstoy, extending the same idea further.
The story is about a cobbler named Martin Avdeich, a sincere worker who while doing his job with perfection is honest to the point of not taking up something he cannot finish on time.Fate had not been kind to him as he lost all his children while still infants and his wife except a three year old son. As he decides to keep his son with him only instead of sending him to live with his sister, after some days this only surviving child also has fever and dies.
Martin Avdeich, all broken and shaken is advised by a pilgrim of his acquaintance to read Bible. Martin purchases a copy of Bible and starts reading it on holidays. Soon it interests him so much that he starts reading it daily, even at night in the light of a lamp.One day he comes across the story of a Pharisee that invites Jesus to his house and there a lady washes Jesus's feet with her tears.This incident as related in the Bible haunts him so much that he hears God telling him that He would visit him.
Next day he invites Stepanich, a worker who is shoving snow outside. He serves him with warm drink and tells about Jesus. Next he finds a woman with a child . The woman is equipped to bear and face the cold . Martin gives her warm clothes and some money.
The same day he settles the matter between an old woman and a boy after he finds that the latter has stolen something from the woman.
It is only during the night that God reveals to him that He had visited Martin in the garb of Stepanich, whom he had served drink, the woman whom he had given clothes & money and the old lady whom he had helped.
Thus the story has a beautiful message that serving humanity is the best way to worship God.