Ever heard this one? Sure you have. Maybe it’s even a personal favorite of yours. But where are the clear cut rules on this deal?
I believe a lot of what “Christians” sluff off under the guise of, ‘not my problem!’—actually IS their problem after all. And won’t every one of us at one point or another face tough times that require help from others?
What if they simply tell you in your time of desperate need—that it’s ‘not their problem?’
Sometimes that’s what it takes to wake us up to the fact that we really should help carry one another’s burdens and lighten the load—dare I say it?—even serve one another as though their needs are as important as ours.
Nah. That’s crazy.
But the God who created the universe and everything in it didn’t think so. Listen to what scripture says about Him (Jesus).
5-8Think of yourselves the way Christ Jesus thought of himself. He had equal status with God but didn’t think so much of himself that he had to cling to the advantages of that status no matter what. Not at all. When the time came, he set aside the privileges of deity and took on the status of a slave, became human! Having become human, he stayed human. It was an incredibly humbling process. He didn’t claim special privileges. Instead, he lived a selfless, obedient life and then died a selfless, obedient death—and the worst kind of death at that—a crucifixion. Philippians 2:5–8
Why would God do this for us, ‘leave me alone, I don’t need you, I’m the boss, I can do better, I don’t care what you think, low-lifes like us?
Oh, did that hurt your feelings? Well, that’s what we are in comparison to a holy, sinless, righteous and perfect God. But don’t fret. Shoot, He actually loves us anyway!
Go figure. We’re self absorbed. We typically thumb our noses at God. We pray only when we want something or need a lighting bolt thrown at someone who is bugging us, etc. But…
He loves us anyway!
However, it’s not a free ride. If that kind of love leaves you hollow and unchanged, you probably don’t know Jesus Christ. A real encounter with Him never leaves you unchanged.
So, this Christmas season make it about someone else and not yourself. Stop making mental (or actual) lists of what everyone else can get you or do for you. It’s not your birthday. It’s His. Do something for Him. Give Jesus a gift.
Oh, but what do we give the God who has everything?
Help a brother or sister in need. That’s the same as handing a present to Jesus! He loves that!
And don’t forget to do good and to share with those in need. These are the sacrifices that please God. Hebrews 13:16
Make every effort to live in peace with all men and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord. Hebrews 12:14
Do your best to live in peace with everyone. Romans 12:18
So what’s it gonna be?
In the end, you’ll have to decide for yourself, but this might help you in the grueling decision making process:
This is how we’ve come to understand and experience love: Christ sacrificed his life for us. This is why we ought to live sacrificially for our fellow believers, and not just be out for ourselves. If you see some brother or sister in need and have the means to do something about it but turn a cold shoulder and do nothing, what happens to God’s love? It disappears. And you made it disappear. I John 3:16
If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? I John 3:17
Tell them to use their money to do good. They should be rich in good works and generous to those in need, always being ready to share with others. I Timothy 6:18
Don’t be misled: No one makes a fool of God. What a person plants, he will harvest. The person who plants selfishness, ignoring the needs of others—ignoring God!—harvests a crop of weeds. All he’ll have to show for his life is weeds! But the one who plants in response to God, letting God’s Spirit do the growth work in him, harvests a crop of real life, eternal life. Galatians 6:7
One more time…What’s it gonna be? Weeds or real and abundant life?