Saturday, August 30, 2008

The Poor

Pure religion is this: to help the widow and orphan in their suffering. Why is this true? Since when is our main focus to be on other people and not the Holy One? I can see that this could be a way of showing our focus on Him, by caring for His children. But not really.
Besides, this sounds like the main focus is to be on this physical life. I can think of ways to explain and justify it all but is it true?

We give to others, that shows love and maybe can only be truly done with the love of the Holy One in us. Except that many help others without God being their motivation. He may be the cause they don't acknowledge, but that's not their reason.
It would be pretty cool if He eventually changes everyone to be as people were intended to be on this earth. Picturing that makes me think I want to be part of that! But truly I have no belief that that's what He'll do. What keeps coming to mind as I write this is a craftsman reaching into the mess of this world (are we really such a mess?) and pulling out the art. I'm thinking of a potter pulling out a shaped beautiful piece and wiping off the dross if that's what the excess is called in pottery. Usually even the thought of being part that is knocked off as excess doesn't bother me, it's all His plan and what He does is what He does. I'll just be wherever I am.

Back to the original thought, how is helping the poor pure and undefiled religion? Is it because it involves sacrifice and thinking of others instead of ourselves? Is it perhaps the mechanism by which we grow more than the act itself? Is it to keep us humble by realizing that could be our own situation through no fault of our own? Many are poor due to their own choices but many, many, many have just ended up that way because of life. Does it force us to be grateful for what we do have?
And what about those desperate for help, the ones we are to help? How does this do anything for them other than to keep them alive in this world? I think we should do more than just give a meal on occasion (if we can); we need to find ways to help people on a track to ... wait a minute. Aren't we supposed to trust the Father who clothes even the fields and feeds birds? Is it that we are to be the outworking of that promise? Because otherwise, He's NOT providing for them. The poor will be with you always.


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  2. "Since when is our main focus to be on other people and not the Holy One?"

    Matthew 25:40 (NASB95)
    40 "The King will answer and say to them, 'Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.'

    Helping the poor is focusing on the Holy One.

    Peace. Tony

  3. Thank you for that quote Tony, I kept trying to think of what else Jesus had said that showed the truth of caring for others as a major priority; I tried to remember who said that about pure religion and wondered if that's really what Jesus thought too. We don't know enough about his life to know if helping others in that way was something he did WHILE preaching or if that was a main thrust but what he said in Matthew's quote makes it quite clear.