“Why ask me about what is good?” Jesus replied. “There is only one who is good. But to answer your question– if you want to receive eternal life, keep the Commandments.” Matthew 19:17 NLT
The true test of our faith and trust in God is not when we have obstacles to face; the challenge is when our storehouse is full–when our monies extend beyond our necessities–and our bank accounts are overflowing.
Money is not evil in itself; however, it brings a level of comfort that opens the door to separate us from God. Matthew 19:17-22 tells us of the rich young man who was interested in eternal life, if he could keep his tangible goods. In fact, when Jesus told him to sell his possessions, and give to the poor, he walked away sad.
How many of us give our tithes and offerings, but never think about helping others? It is not a natural thought process to sit down, designate monies to give away, and contemplate on “who can I help today?”
I was in the store last week and overheard a young woman telling her co-worker that she and three of her friends were in a restaurant and the waitstaff informed them that their bill was paid in full by an anonymous benefactor. She relayed that she had read stories of people who gave to others, but she never really believed that it would happen in her life. As I continued to listen, she expressed that she now has the desire to help others.
We must constantly remind ourselves that it is God who provides. Are we able to sell all that we have and give it away to the poor? If not, then your faith and trust is in yourself. Do not let the abundance of money separate you from God. We are instructed to help those in need on a continuous basis.
What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. James 2:14-17 ESV
God instructs us to give beyond our charitable contributions. Our time is also a valuable and precious commodity. If we are truly trusting in God then we will give, give, give of ourselves and from our storehouse.
Verses for today: 1 Kings 17:7-24 Elijah and the Widow at Zarephath.
Prayer for today: Dear God, Thank you for the many blessings that you have bestowed upon us. Please help us to have the desire to go beyond our charitable contributions, and seek out those who are poor and in need. It is only by your grace and mercy that we are in the position to help others. Thank you for hearing and answering our prayer. In Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen!
Sonya Johnson Ruiz
Santa Fe, New Mexico