|IN HIS NAME
action "what we say" about Jesus.
We can love the needy because
we are grateful to God for his mercy.
Or we can do it because it is
the right thing to do.
In community, when one hurts
we all (should) feel the pain.
of the poor of our community have been ignored, shunned, maligned or treated
with disdain. Even some church organizations hold the poor in low esteem,
not worthy of their tangible love.
Of those who actual have received
help, we hear from clients, that it has often been given without much
expression of love. There are notable exceptions for which I am grateful.
This conclusion is based on many hundreds of conversations with clients over
When one of us seeks to love a neighbor, the credibility of our words is
an issue. God wants us to love others as He has loved us -- not out of
"duty"; and not looking down our noses at them.
More is required than for us to advise them or to talk with them about
how Christ can change their lives. As we stand before them our lives
testify to what Christ does. Who we are is our witness.
Loving as Christ loves us means, as
we listen to God's spirit, we may be guided to share from our abundance; or
in some cases a sacrificial gift is appropriate.
When we give financial or material aid, our words about God’s love
become more believable. Our positive action validates "what we say"
Jesus taught with words and with deeds. He showed us that God is an
ACTION GOD. He DID what He saw the Father DOING.
Our Lord emphasized the importance of good works by His people. Good deeds
certainly won't save us, but they may authenticate us as God’s people. God
believes us more by what we do than just by our vows alone.