DayBreaks for 03/22/11 – What God Will Never Say
I’ve been very challenged in my thinking and discipleship lately. God has been revealing blind spots in my life as a Christian – in particular, as an American Christian. One blind spot in particular that He’s really been working on in my life is my attitude toward the poor.
Americans don’t like to see suffering, especially suffering of little children who have not had adequate food or water and who are dying as a result. When those images show up on our TV screens, we quickly get up to go to the fridge, or change the channel, or find some other way to divert our eyes from the very harsh and hard realities that exist in this world. We don’t want to see that kind of suffering. It makes us uncomfortable – and that’s a very good thing. We need to be made uncomfortable, especially as Americans who own so much and spend so much of our income on cushy luxuries. I don’t yet know specifically what it is that God wants me to do with what He’s been showing me.
Israel, long ago, observed feast days, multitudes of tithes of money, crops, wine, etc., they observed temple rituals and cleansings. They memorized the Torah and recounted the great deeds of YHWH for generation after generation. They thought that all those things would make them acceptable – even pleasing to God. After all, God had commanded those observances. But in the writings of the great prophet Isaiah, God filled them in on the truth about what mattered to Him: Is not this the fast that I choose: to loose the bonds of wickedness, to undo the straps of the yoke, to let the oppressed go free, and to break every yoke? 7 Is it not to share your bread with the hungry and bring the homeless poor into your house; when you see the naked, to cover him, and not to hide yourself from your own flesh? 8 Then shall your light break forth like the dawn, and your healing shall spring up speedily; your righteousness shall go before you; the glory of the LORD shall be your rear guard. – Is. 58:6-8
God cares about the poor, the starving, the naked, the homeless. He hears their cries. He wonders if we hear them, and if we will respond to them.
While I don’t know what God wants me to do specifically about this blind spot in my life, I am sure of this as an American Christian: the day won’t ever come when I stand before God and hear Him say to me, “I wish you’d kept more of what I gave you for yourself.”
PRAYER: God, I confess my blindness and hard-heartedness towards the plight of the poor. Forgive me for my selfishness, and set me free from the tyranny of possessions and money. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
COPYRIGHT 2011, Galen C. Dalrymple ><}}}”>
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