Altruism God’s way- is that possible?

#GrowingCloserToGod and #lovingpeoplebetter include taking care of their physical needs. It also includes ensuring that the scales of justice are not stacked against them!

In the book of Leviticus, our Good, Good, Father left explicit instruction about how to ensure that the poor would not go hungry.

“And thou shalt not glean thy vineyard, neither shalt thou gather every grape of thy vineyard; thou shalt leave them for the poor and stranger: I am the Lord your God.” 19:10‬ ‭KJV‬‬

David also addressed the plight of the needy.

“For the needy shall not alway be forgotten: the expectation of the poor shall not perish for ever. Arise, O Lord; let not man prevail: let the heathen be judged in thy sight. Put them in fear, O Lord: that the nations may know themselves to be but men. Selah.” Psalms‬ ‭9:18-20‬ ‭KJV‬‬

When we forget the needy we have forgotten the expressed love of God for all people. We know that we cannot erase poverty but we can at least attempt to live by the love that our Father shows toward the power and disenfranchised of this world. When Jesus sent His disciples out on their first missions trip. He identified a basic need and the blessings that flow from fulfilling that need.

“And whosoever shall give to drink unto one of these little ones a cup of cold water only in the name of a disciple, verily I say unto you, he shall in no wise lose his reward.” Matthew‬ ‭10:42‬ ‭KJV‬‬

We will never be able to totally erase poverty and or social injustice but The Family of God can be the ambassadors of “God’s expression of altruism.” We can show the love of God to the poor by the way we actively engage in outreach to them. Although Jesus said, “For the poor always ye have with you;…” John‬ ‭12:8‬ ‭KJV‬‬ He was not negating their need for food, water, and shelter. Yes, he told Judas off. But Judas was focused on keeping the money and he used the poor and needy as an excuse. How many times has someone asked us to support a legitimate ministry that is reaching out to the physical and or spiritual poor and need and we choose to have that extra dinner out that month instead of giving? Pray that our Father in Heaven’s name will be praised and glorified by our intentional efforts to support Kingdom Ministries that are reaching out to the poor and needy.

Application

  1. When you buy your groceries set aside a canvas bag into which you will place at least 2 cans of food for a local soup kitchen or food pantry. 1 can should be protein and the other should be a vegetable. Remember that corn is not a vegetable.
  2. If you eat out a lot make an intentional effort to miss one of those “eating out meals”  each month and pledge to donate those funds to a ministry that is taking care of the emotional, physical, and or psychologically needy. Just imagine what would happen to a ministry, food pantry, or soup kitchen if 1,000 people per month sent in at least $10.00? It would completely change their bottom dollar.
  3. Share hungry fundraisers with not just your friends on social media but also with your church family. Give everyone an opportunity to become engaged in Kingdom work. In sharing “a cup of cold water” in Jesus name.
  4. If you grow a garden set aside your first fruit for the local food pantry.
  5. Support a missionary who is working overseas in an impoverished country. WHy? They use their seed support funds to shows those starving people how to create an industry that enables them to support themselves.
  6. When I was a classroom teacher my students learned how to send cards to anyone who was ill.  We visited the senior centers closest to us and decorated their Christmas trees with ornaments that they make and little love notes. We took the residents flowers to cheer them up and we sang Carols to them. WHY? My students needed to know that we were a community of learners. So, they learned how to take care of each other. Then we extended that altruism to the family members of each student in the classroom. Next, we extended it to the grade level, and to the school in general. Lastly, we extended it to the community.

Prayer: Give us your eyes to see the needy as you see them and then give us your heart to serve them as you want us to serve them. Amen!

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