Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Helping Others

Prov. 3:27-28 Do not withhold good from those who deserve it when it’s in your power to help them. If you can help your neighbor now, don’t say, “Come back tomorrow and then I will help you.

A couple of things strike me from these verses. One is that we are not to withhold good from those who DESERVE it. I don”t believe the Lord would have us treat all people the same. We are to love all people the same, but some people don’t deserve to be treated with a generous spirit. Sadly, there are a lot of people who won’t help themselves and expect others to take care of them. Some people go out of their way to make life miserable for others and who take advantage of them. We need to be wise and discerning in whom we extend favor to.

Having said that, we are to strive to be kind to all and live at peace with them. We do it because it is the nature of God’s love which flows from the heart of those who love Him.

Another observation is that not all people have the means or opportunity to help others. The Lord holds us accountable for our attitude in regards to what we have. If we refuse to help others when we have the power to do so, we will face God’s judgment for it. If we don’t have the means, the Lord does not expect us to deprive ourselves of our daily needs for the sake of others.

If the Lord nudges you to do good for someone, don’t ignore it or put it off. The Lord never leads us to do what we can’t do. He always provides the means to fulfill His will.  A generous and giving heart should characterize those who are children of God.  But, don’t be foolish; give with discernment.  It is not love to give to those who refuse to help themselves.  We are to help build each other up, not enable them to continue their self-destructive ways.  Seek wisdom and discernment from the Lord and don’t let your emotions determine your actions.

The time to help others is during their time of need.  Putting it off may cause you to miss entirely the opportunity to do good and honor Christ.

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