I found this photo and message earlier this year on someone’s Facebook post. I re-posted it on our charities’ website and got many hits from it. I think it hit a nerve for many of us, including myself. It caused me to stop and think about what I was doing to change the world for the people of Christ.
The Bible makes many references to the topics of poverty, suffering and injustice. There are more than 300 such verses on these topics alone. God even goes so far as to call the poor blessed in Luke. Luke 6:20-21. Blessed are you who are poor, for yours in the kingdom of God. Blessed are you who hunger now, for you shall be satisfied. In many of the verses, Jesus also calls us to action on behalf of the poor and suffering of this world as found in Matthew 5:42 “Give to him who asks of you, and do not turn away from him who wants to borrow from you.”
Why is it so hard for us to help those in need? Why do we want to turn away from the ugliness of poverty, suffering and injustice? I think some people think poverty is a contiguous disease that will spread if one gets too close. Alternatively, some might find it depressing to see the suffering of the world. Sometimes the problem just seems too large for us to make a difference so we ignore it. We might give money to a charity because we do not want to deal with the issues face to face, let someone else do the hard work. God values the poor of the world, so why don’t we do the same?
God’s instructions are very simply, “Help the poor and needy” but we find so many excuses not to help. I bet a few of those excuses crossed your mind already as you read this blog. We might view the poor as dangerous, different, lazy or inferior. We might even view them as deserving of their lot in life. God’s instruction cut across all our imagined excuses, “HELP THE POOR AND NEEDY.” No caveats.
Back to the question in the photo with God now asking you, “Why do you allow poverty, suffering and injustice to exist in my world and what are you doing to stop it?”
May the Lord Bless you and keep.
Matthew 28:19 “Therefore, GO and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.”