Amos 8:4-7 Hear this, you who trample the needy and do away with the poor of the land, saying, "When will the New Moon be over that we may sell grain, and the Sabbath be ended that we may market wheat?"--skimping the measure, boosting the price and cheating with dishonest scales, buying the poor with silver and the needy for a pair of sandals, selling even the sweepings with the wheat. The LORD has sworn by the Pride of Jacob: "I will never forget anything they have done.
“We must not forget that when the Hebrew prophets talked about the plight of the poor, they focused not on the behavior of the poor, but on the behavior of the privileged and powerful. The cross deconstructs moral superiority. And the faith that sets women and men free, the grace of justification, releases them to work passionately for social justice and the good of their neighbors.” ii
Christian, you are free from self-concern. God has enlightened you to the providential care that he promises to all his people. When we realize that God is meeting our needs, we can take more of our energy and thoughts to focus on others. We are free from worry about our future and how specific needs will be met. Jesus says “don’t sweat the details”. We are to turn our attention toward others, both those inside and outside the church.
Look at the lives of the saints of the past and present. They had very little in the way of worldly wealth or possessions. But they were rich in relationships. They had many people that were in constant touch with them. They met the material needs of others in order to find opportunities to share the freedom they already possessed through their relationship to God. These saints lived to serve, minister, disciple and mentor the children of God. They left family, friends and often the church to embark on global missions to the lost throughout the world. You can read about them ministering to drunks along the Bowery in New York City, peasant farmers in China, diamond miners in South Africa, and elsewhere.
It’s not the rich who are free to serve. They are bound to their possessions. But rather, it is the child of God; freed from earthly concerns who is truly free to serve the living God by lovingly serving others.Prayer: Father, do not allow the gifts you give me in life to blind me to the needs of others. Help me to know the truth that your gifts to me are to glorify you in being used to help your people and reach the lost. Amen.