Saturday, July 05, 2008

Fighting Poverty

"He who gives to the poor will lack nothing,
but he who closes his eyes to them receives many curses" (Proverbs 28:27, NIV).

About a year and a half ago, we began to memorize Scriptures as a family. Typically, we spend about 10 days reading a verse during meal times. Lately we have been reading Proverbs 28:27, a verse that emphasizes how much God wants his people to care for the poor.

Poverty comes in various forms.

The economically poor cannot meet their financial needs. They cannot make enough money to pay their rent, buy groceries, or purchase other necessities.

The physically poor suffer from health problems. They may deal with a chronic disease, a mental disability, depression, or other health issues.

Those who are poor in wisdom deal with the results of bad choices in life. They may have dropped out of school. They may have become addicted to alcohol or drugs. They may have joined gangs. They may have divorced their spouses. They may have been fired from numerous jobs due to perpetual conflicts with bosses or co-workers.

The spiritually poor live without a spiritual connection to God. They are missing the benefits of life with Christ.

Sometimes people face every form of poverty at once. Sometimes we face different combinations of poverty at the same time. Sometimes we face only one form of poverty at a time. However, nobody goes through life without ever facing poverty.

So the question is: How can I help? Could I buy someone lunch? Could I take a sack or two of groceries to their apartment? Could I help someone find a job? Could I visit someone in the hospital? Could I listen to someone feeling depressed? Could I help someone study for the GED? Could I teach a class about building and maintaining strong families? Could I let someone know how good Jesus Christ is?

Let's fight poverty in every form, and receive God's blessings in the process.

2 comments:

Mike said...

Terry,

This is a great idea formemorization as a family. Funny, I have been going through Proverbs. This is my third reading now.

I love Prov 14:31. It speaks of opressing the poor as dishonoring GOD. Then helping the poor as honoring GOD.

I think we have to tie our economic ideals to our theology.

Terry said...

You're absolutely right, Mike. Thanks for the comment!