Give to the poor and needy
“We would all like a reputation for generosity and we'd all like to buy it cheap.” —Mignon McLaughlin
Many years ago, my dad spoke to a group of radical young missionaries led by George Verwer. The ragtag team was the seed group for Operation Mobilization – now one of the great mission organizations of the world.
George’s challenge was simple: Sell everything you have. Use the money to buy literature. Live in the warehouse with the boxes of literature. Get the literature out to as many people as you can. A whole bunch of families took him up on the challenge. They filled a whole warehouse full of literature and then set up cots where they lived with their families. They were simply taking the words of Jesus to heart:
“Do not be afraid, little flock… Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in Heaven that will not be exhausted, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys.”– Luke 12:32-33
The day my dad spoke, he saw the team’s kids wearing worn out shirts and pants with holes in the knees. It was the only set of clothes they owned. But no one was moaning about how poor they were. Their minds were focused on the five billion people in the world who had less than they did materially and spiritually.
At home that night, Dad talked to Mom. “Jill, I'm almost embarrassed with how much God's given us! Let’s pass it along.” So they took the majority of the clothes out of our closets, put them in a big box, and drove back that night to the other side of England to give them to George and his team.
When my dad went back the next week to teach again, the kids were still in their old clothes with the holes in their knees. “Thank you so much for the clothes,” George told my dad. “We sold them and bought a bunch of boxes of literature. That was so great!”
Today, George still has a way of taking the words of Jesus to heart. Will we?
Jesus, I don’t want to be afraid of Your words. I need You to move in my heart. Show me how You want me to give to the poor today – show me something specific. Then give me the willingness to trust You and obey You. Amen.
Listen to Pete, Jill & Stuart Briscoe on the Telling the Truth broadcast at OnePlace.com
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