a light in the darkness

Oftentimes we who have had it better than others can tend to look down on those who struggle. Perhaps people who are unemployed and maybe even homeless. Or just barely make it. Yes, we find those people everywhere. Who through some misfortune, or perhaps substance abuse, whatever the reason, they’ve fallen on bad times. There does seem to be upward mobility oftentimes for those who enter into faith, or live with a strong sense of hope and responsibility. But some good people of faith may continue to struggle in one way or another. Of course all of this is relative. Some may rather look at me in a similar way.

What are we to be in this world, except a light in the darkness. We are a light by the good deeds we do. Jesus said that we’re to let our light shine before others that they may see our good works and praise our Father in heaven. We are a light to others when we care about their plight. When we not only pray for them, but provide for their needs. When we support good institutions which help those who are destitute and poor.

I am glad for what we have done as a family, admittedly having found some of  it difficult. I want us to do more. I’m glad to be a part of a church which seeks to be diligent in this way, in the way of helping the poor. Admittedly neither us nor our church have much in the way of silver or gold. But what we do have we offer. Including material goods, our church has the food pantry for the area its in. And in the name of Jesus for others to rise up and walk.

It is interesting how in the dark places we can find light here and there. In fact it has been said that there is more faith per capita among the homeless than in society at large. This is not to minimize the toll that this kind of living takes on the human, even with reference to their full humanity.

Yes, Israel was to be a light to the nations, fulfilled in Jesus the Messiah, and now fulfilled in us who follow Jesus. Jesus is the light of the world, and we are as well, in him. It is a light which not only beckons to God, but gives help where needed. Especially to orphans and widows in their distress.

Over and over again in scripture we are told to help the poor, that God cares about their plight, and blesses those who help them, while his curse rests on those who do not. For something to be truly Christian, there must be an emphasis on practical help for the poor.

We’re to be generous, along with being wise in the good works we do. We’re to do good to all people, especially to the family of believers.

I pray that I might grow in this area. That we as followers of Jesus may be known not only for how we love each other (which includes meeting others’ needs), but how we love those in need. In practical, down to earth ways, along with caring about their need to hear the good news of Jesus. We do this individually and together in community in Jesus for the world.