"Sympathy is no substitute for action."
- David Livingstone
Missionary to Africa
What the World Needs Now
By Hannah Goodwyn
If you’re like me and are guilty of not responding, even for just a moment, to the needs in our world today, then let these words leave your soul forever changed.
The problem is us. Our main goal should be to seek God’s best for each other. Yet, we allow personal desires to shift our priorities to a selfish focus.
You’re probably thinking, "There’s too much to take on… poverty, disease, war, hatred…." God alone can change the course of history. That’s true. But, didn’t He choose to use the everyday man and local woman long ago to feed the masses, clothe the naked, and heal the sick? It’s time to take responsibility for the way we care for one another.
Defend the cause of the weak and fatherless; maintain the rights of the poor and oppressed. Rescue the weak and needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked. Psalm 82:2-4 (New International Version)
God has the tangible power we need to see miracles happen. Poverty and homelessness can meet its end. Diseases are healed, in Jesus’ name. Wisdom and love can crush even the strongest feelings of hatred. It’s not hopeless; God is all we need to make these seemingly far-fetched dreams reality.
To effect change like this, it will take people who are completely willing to shake themselves of their apathy.
The Answer to the World's Problems
Compassion is the answer – not a conditional love, but an unrestricted mercy that only God can sustain within us. Open your eyes to see what God sees. He is not blind to our pain. He hears the cries of the abused and neglected. Do you hear them?
He who shuts his ear to the cry of the poor will also cry himself and not be answered. Proverbs 21:13 (New American Standard Bible)
Believe me, this isn’t meant to be a guilt trip. I’m not trying to shame you into caring for strangers. Take these words just as a reminder of who God has called us to be – friends who care for one another.
You insult your Maker when you exploit the powerless; when you're kind to the poor, you honor God. Proverbs 14:31 (The Message)
Don’t stop at just remembering those in need. What good has been done if we occasionally think on the less fortunate and feel sorry for their circumstance? Who is that helping? No one, but ourselves. It accomplishes nothing. All it does is make us feel better about ourselves. There it is again - self. There’s no “others” in that mindset.
God Says, Above All ... Love
Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you. James 1:27 (New Living Translation)
The first time I heard the song, "Dear Leopold,” it spoke straight to my heart. It's an angry response to a ruler who lived for himself a century ago.
"Dear Leopold" by Todd Smith
Play "Dear Leopold"
*Portion of Alive, Curb Records (2004)
You could have been the one who drove tyrants away
You could have seen a people delivered
from their chains, Dear Leopold
You could have stood for justice, and been the people's king
You could have stood for freedom, could've stood
for anything, Dear Leopold
But greed and deceit were your drive that took over your life
In spite of the millions who die
Like the ocean, it goes on and on
You gave us a hope that seemed endless
But it was a lie, you wasted your life
Building empty castles for yourself
And in the end you threw it all away
When you stand before your maker, what will you say?
Giving accounts of all of the days, Dear Leopold
Will you stand there in silence, shaking at the knees?
Reminded of your failures and your atrocities,
Dear Leopold, Dear Leopold
Ask yourself - "What am I doing with my time and money? Am I wasting my life away trying to build my own castles... that will disappear in face of eternity anyway?"
Any lasting good we can do in this life must be done. Care for the orphans. Look after the widows. Comfort the brokenhearted. Reach out to the untouchable. How can one person accomplish all of that?
We have three options: Pray. Support. Serve.
Hannah Goodwyn serves as the Family and Entertainment producer for CBN.com. For more articles and info, visit Hannah's bio page.
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