Posts Tagged ‘poverty’

According to: http://www.globalissues.org/article/26/poverty-facts-and-stats

  • Almost half the world — over 3 billion people — live on less than $2.50 a day.
  • At least 80% of humanity lives on less than $10 a day.
  • According to UNICEF, 22,000 children die each day due to poverty. And they “die quietly in some of the poorest villages on earth, far removed from the scrutiny and the conscience of the world. Being meek and weak in life makes these dying multitudes even more invisible in death.”
  • Some 1.1 billion people in developing countries have inadequate access to water, and 2.6 billion lack basic sanitation.
  • 15 million children orphaned due to HIV/AIDS (similar to the total children population in Germany or United Kingdom)

These are staggering statistics! Why are we not doing more to end poverty? I know that the Bible said that we will always have the poor among us, but are we using that as a cop out, so we don’t have to do anything? Are we using that as an excuse to sit on our apathetic rear ends and ignore the poor around us?

I think we are. We are also great at placing blame on those living in poverty, “they are just lazy” “they don’t want help” “he/she is a druggie, why should we help?” I agree that there are those living in poverty because of their own poor decisions. I, also know that, many living in poverty are there because of governmental actions, downsizing, generational curses or natural disasters. There are many reasons why people live in poverty and guess what, it doesn’t matter!

Jesus never questioned why someone was poor. Of course, He already knew, but it didn’t matter. He loved people regardless of their situations. He ministered to people even when their circumstances were because of decisions they made. Jesus did not judge and we shouldn’t either.

In my own family, we have taken in transients who needed a place to crash for a few days. They were dirty, stinky, and their clothes were tattered, but we loved them for who they were on the inside and they were great guys. They were 3 of the most polite young men I have met. They did dishes without asking and had a great time just hanging out with a family. I would not recommend this without much prayer and good judgement, but you never know when you may be entertaining angels unaware (Hebrews 13:2).

Acts 4: 32-35

32 All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of their possessions was their own, but they shared everything they had. 33 With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And God’s grace was so powerfully at work in them all 34 that there were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned land or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales 35 and put it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to anyone who had need.

Acts 2: 42-47

42 They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. 43 Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles.44 All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45 They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. 46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts,47 praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.

In today’s church, we tend to be of the belief that this way of living was only for the early church. That is so not true! Their example is how we should be living now! We should be taking care of our own families, neighbors, communities, as the Church and not depending on government agencies to do our work for us. When we depend on “someone else” we may be missing the opportunity to witness to someone who really needs Jesus in their lives. Maybe Jesus is all that it will take to take someone from poverty to prosperity. When we wait for “someone else” to care for the poor, we miss the opportunity to love as Jesus instructed us to love. We need to open our hearts and start living out our faith in the example of the early church.

The poor may always be around us, so make that decision today to love as Jesus loved, even though someone may not have had a bath in a week or a month. Take the time to love as Jesus loved and wash the feet of the poor, taking the time to build a relationship that may end up being a blessing to you instead.

Let’s BE the church. Let’s BE an example of Jesus to those around us. It doesn’t matter why the poor are poor. What matters is that they know Jesus. Are YOU being Jesus to the least of these around you?

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