The hot shower I took this morning reminds me that I truly live a life of luxury. I have enough food, a warm, comfortable home, more clothes and shoes than I need, people to love and who love me. I have the capacity to think, read, write, make art and music, and worship the Lord. I can hike, swat a tennis ball, and dance. I look out a window, and see Venus glowing next to the delicate crescent moon. I hear laughter and the rustle of leaves. I feel soft breezes, the weight of a child nestled in my arms, sleek cat fur. I am safe and cared for it. I have friends to call or hang out with. I have transportation that can whisk me a hundred miles from home in a couple of hours I am truly blessed and grateful. I am fortunate to have been plopped into this time – into a loving family and community – in Michigan – in the United States…
“From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.” Luke 22:48b
Much has been given me!
I criticize billionaires for having more money than they can spend in their lifetimes. I think to myself that if I had all that money, I’d give it away and relieve impoverished suffering.
Am I doing that now?!
As United States citizens, my husband and I live on an annual income well below the US median income. As a global citizens, we would be considered quite wealthy by people in many different countries. More importantly, we are much freer and safer than a large percentage of the world’s population.
I feel uncomfortable… Is that Discomfort from Your Holy Spirit, Lord? There is a huge disconnect when we empathize with others’ suffering but fail to act.
Most of us would take in a starving child that appeared on our doorstep. But our lives are so busy, we don’t take time to help people that aren’t standing right in front of us.
Lord, You acted out of Deep Compassion so many times when You walked the Earth. And when we allow Your Holy Spirit to Guide us, we are led to relieve suffering by that same Compassion. We don’t act in order to earn Salvation. We act out of our Salvation – when we have turned from our own ego as our driving force to Your Holy Spirit.
Lord, I can do much more with my resources and abilities than I’m doing now! Thank You for pointing that out. Please Lead me to the places where You need me. Show me what You need me to do. Show me where I can share the resources You’ve given me with those who need them more than I do. Help me to remember that You Will Always Care for me – even more than You care for the lilies of the field and the birds of the air. Help me to know that I can let go of my resources. Give me the Faith to be confident that I will be fine without them.
Matthew 6:26,28-29 (Jesus said) “Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your Heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? …And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin.Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these.”
Help me to stop having virtual compassion. Help me to start seeing people with Your Genuine Compassion. Help me to attend to Your Holy Spirit’s Nudges to call or visit a lonely neighbor, to give a panhandler the money in my pocket and acknowledge their humanity, to serve wherever You Call me to serve… All with a Joyful heart!