By Diana Rockwell
My neighbor knocked at the door, graciously returning some money my son Dale had in his possession and had shared with their family. Dale was about six years old and this family was struggling to make ends meet. We don’t know how Dale knew his daddy had some money in his drawer, tucked away for a rainy day, but he decided to share. What do you do when you need the money just as bad?
The Lord said in Deuteronomy 15:11, “There will always be poor people in the land. Therefore I command you to be openhanded toward your fellow Israelites who are poor and needy in your land.”
My heart is conflicted when I see the homeless person at any intersection. Do you give them money? Most feel that you should not give the person money. I have assisted the homeless with gift cards, water bottles, and yes I have given money and food.
I have a book ministry where I give books away to women who can’t afford the book but want to participate in the study. Also, I have given Bibles away to women who have accepted the Lord.
I recently cleaned out my closet and gave some very nice clothes to the Good Will. Reaching out to others is the only way I know how to be the arms of Jesus, whether that is helping someone with their gas and electric bill or buying them a new bible.
What can you do to help the poor? Donations of food to the local food closet is an easy option. Serving at your church or in a soup kitchen is another area to think about. I was thinking of labeling water bottles with John 3:16 to give to the homeless and to have some gift cards so I am not tempted to give money that can be used to buy drugs. Another way to help the homeless is to be kind and smile at the person. Sometimes kindness can really make a person’s day. I have asked on my way into 7-11, “What can I buy you?” and usually a cup of coffee and a donut is the answer. Don’t be afraid to engage in conversation.
Dale shared that day. We ended up becoming really good friends with that family and shared many meals. Of course, there was a conversation about not getting into daddy’s drawers and a thank you to the man for returning the money. How can you be the arms of Jesus to the poor today?
1 thought on “Sharing With the Poor”
Oh bless his heart, Diana! How precious is the innocence of our children and their gracious hearts?
I too, struggle with not giving money to the homeless on the side of the Road or on the Street, but have handed them bottles of water, and on occasion I have also handed them money, and all the while wondering if they would truly use it wisely, or for drugs. As I am leaving them, I pray that God would bless that money, and give them the desire to use it for nourishment or personal needs. You are so right about making eye contact with these people. So many people in society today look away and avoid them at all costs. They never give them a second thought and realize that Jesus loves these people, just like He loves us! I have actually placed my hand on their shoulder and said “God Bless you today,” as I walk by them. My pastor’s wife was led to ask a homeless woman sitting at a picnic table outside Tim Horton’s if she needed prayer. The woman was crying and said yes, and thanked her. She then felt God tell her to pray right there! She placed her hands on the woman and began to pray, she said it was the most amazing feeling, knowing people were walking past her as she stood there with her eyes closed, praying for this complete stranger. But she answered and obeyed God’s call that day. We may never know what happened to that lady, but if we stop and take time to offer to pray, and if we feel led and safe in doing so, pray right there on the spot! It may be the thing they need to lead them to the Lord!