“Being kind to the poor is like lending to the Lord;
He will reward you for what you have done” (Proverbs 19:17-NCV).
Todd is leading a Bible study every Wednesday night called Counter Culture by David Platt.
Last week’s session was on wealth and how we should be content with what we have all the while being willing to give/share even more of what we have to those around us who need it.
We’re all familiar with Philippians 4:13 that says “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me”, right? Well, have you read the verses that precede it? We take this scripture mentioned above and use it for whatever situation where strength, or the like, is desired (#guiltyascharged). However, the scriptures preceding it puts it into perspective for us.
“Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me” (Philippians 4:11-13).
—>”… in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content ….”
– drawing strength from the Lord.
Let that sink in.
Keep the highest standards for God in your thoughts and actions, keep your mind on Christ, and gain contentment. “To live is Christ, to die is gain” Philippians 1:21.
May we practice dying to self and sharing our wealth (whether it be money, food, time, etc.) with those around us who are in need; and may we be more aware of the needs of others and less self-aware as we do all things through Christ who strengthens us.
*I leave you with a story that pretty much sums this up. PLEASE take the time to read it. Todd used it in class Wednesday night, The original post came from Anthony Eaves and was reposted by a friend of ours. ↓ ↓ ↓
One had everything and one had nothing.
I spent most of yesterday in Little Rock. I had dropped a load off at my company and was waiting for the time to take another one to Oklahoma. Earlier I had gone to the truck stop in my pick-up truck to get a sandwich. That is where I met a young lady sitting on the sidewalk by the door. She was asking people if they were heading towards Hope, Arkansas.
Most people ignored her and some walked way around her. Others just said no and kept going. I stopped and talked to her. She was in her late twenties and, to most people, she looked horrible. Her skin was almost like plastic and scaled. She wore a bandanna on her bald head and she had no eyebrows. I think she was a little surprised that I stopped and said hello.
She asked if I was going towards Hope and I told her no I’m a truck driver and I’m just here to get a sandwich before I go to Oklahoma. Oh, she said. Well, I’m from Hope. I’m just here in Little Rock for my chemo. I had breast cancer and both breasts removed. I have a disease called scleroderma which is why my skin looks this way. I told her yes I’m familiar with scleroderma; my wife has it. I told her. “You seem to be in a tight situation, kid. Do you have any family in Hope that can come to get you?” “No” she replied. “We just have the one vehicle and my husband told me on the phone that it’s broke down again. He won’t be able to get me ’til tomorrow. The doctors know our situation, so they gave me this so I don’t have to come to Little Rock as often.”
She raised her sleeve to show me a device attached to her that will pump chemo into her at home. “Well, do you have any money on you? “I asked. “No,” she said. “But Jesus will provide.” I slipped her a twenty I had on me and said “Well, now you do. Get yourself something to eat while you wait.”
She reached into her little bag and pulled out her Bible.
“Thank you, sir, for the money; I am hungry. Can I pray for you?”
“Sure,” I told her as I knelt down.
She opened her Bible to read a small scripture. Then she prayed for me. When she said amen I looked to my right and there was an older woman who was dressed quite well down on her knees next to us with her hands folded as if she had been praying also.
“I’m sorry,” she said “but I’ve been waiting out here for my husband. He’s using the restroom and getting us some coffee. I couldn’t help but overhear y’alls conversation. Miss, we are heading home to Texarkana and Hope is on the way. If you’d like, my husband and I could give you a ride?”
“That would be wonderful!” she said as she turned to me and said, “See, Jesus always provides a way for us if we just believe.”
The lady asked her husband if he would go in with the young lady to get her a hamburger. I went in and got my sandwich and my coffee. As I came out the man was helping the young lady into the back seat. His wife came up to me and said: “Sir, I just wanted to thank you.”
“For what,” I asked, as I hadn’t done anything for her. As she looked behind her at the young lady in the back of her car she said, “For restoring the faith in God of a woman with breast cancer. I think she’s had faith in God for a long time, the lady with that little Bible of hers.”
She turned and looked at me with tears in her eyes and said “I’m not talking about her. I’m talking about me. That’s why my husband and I are here in Little Rock. We just came from my doctor. You know,” she said, “on the surface, I look like I have everything, and she looks like she has nothing. But before I knelt down and prayed with y’all, her, with her faith, had everything that actually mattered…and I had nothing. Y’alls conversation and prayer reminded me where I came from and how I was raised. And looking at her I now have hope.”
So one had nothing, one had everything.
After that day, we all walked away with something.