“3 But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, 4 so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” Matthew 6:3-4
In contemplating Mercy this year, I have been amazed at how hard my own heart is in response to the needy. Yet this is a major theme of the Bible, especially the Old Testament prophets.
As Christians, it is not our calling to condemn the poor, but I hear a lot of that going on. “All they want is a handout,” is sneered.
In the last six months, my husband has been battling to keep his job, which is threatened due to a company takeover and their subsequent efforts to dispense with long-term employees. We have had to adjust our priorities and contemplate giving up luxuries (cable TV, eating out, shopping at Aldi’s instead of Family Fare or Meijer). I say this not for the sake of seeking sympathy, but simply because I have been thinking more about those who are less fortunate than we are.
My daughter says that “poverty is gripping.” As working class people with decent jobs, we have not suffered poverty. Even if my husband would lose his job, he can get Social Security. He would not be without income.
I have been thinking about all that I am thankful for as Thanksgiving approaches. And as we contemplate downsizing, what can I give in response to that thanks giving?