April 13, 2022

Am I Responsible for the Poor?


But if anyone has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him? Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth. 1 John 3:17-18

Jesus said, “You will always have the poor among you” (Mark 14:7), but the fact that poverty is impossible to stamp out doesn’t mean that we’re exempt from doing something about it.

God never holds you responsible for what you cannot do, for what you do not have, for where you cannot go.  But He does hold you accountable for what you can do, for what you do have, and for where you can go.

When considering the needs of the poor, ask yourself:  What do I have in my hand? and “What is the reach of my arm?”

Let’s take that first question:  What do you have in your hand?  Whether you’re a businessperson, an Uber driver or a mom caring for kids, you have three things in your grasp: (1) time, (2) skills and abilities, and (3) resources.

The actual “reach of your arm,” might surprise you.  Consider this: a journalist working in China found an orphan and took the child to a Christian care facility, asking one of the sisters to feed the child.  “Mr. Pierce,” she responded, “we can’t take another child.  At least four children are eating out of every rice bowl now.”  And, picking up the toddler, she put him in Bob Pierce’s lap and said, “Here, now what will you do with him?”

Bob Pierce bought rice for the orphan home and went back to America to raise money for children orphaned by war.  That’s how the organization of World Vision was started. When you see a need before you today, simply do what you can to meet that need.


Resource reading: Mark 14:1-9