We were sitting in the “break room” having lunch. I had been invited to eat with the employees to “connect” with a young man who was having serious financial and marital problems. When he finished eating, he took his plastic dinnerware to the sink, washed them, wrapped them in a napkin, and put them in his pocket.
Another employee noticed what he did and said sarcastically, “Wow, you’re really having it tough. Want mine too? No doubt your family could use them.”
When those words pierced his heart, he burst into tears, dropped his head to his chest and stood quietly, not knowing what to say. One more blow for him deal with and struggle to overcome on his path to survival.
I walked up to him, put my arm around his shoulder and said, “I’ve gone through difficult times, too. I’m glad I had to do without when I was your age because now I understand your feelings and know you will survive.”
The one who “oppresses the poor” is not a friend of God. In fact, such behavior reflects their attitude toward the One who created both. If anyone has contempt for another person, it spills over onto God - for He gave life for both and they are of equal value in His sight. We sometimes forget that His Son died for both - as He did for each of us.
Whatever anyone has is a gift from God to be used to honor Him – including plastic dinnerware. Jesus made that extremely clear when He said, “I tell you the truth, whatever you did to one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.” When we share our love and resources with those in need, as Solomon said, we honor God.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, we ask for hearts filled with compassion to care for those in need of love and life’s essentials. May we care for them as You care for us. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Scripture For Today: Proverbs 14:31 Whoever oppresses the poor shows contempt for their Maker, but whoever is kind to the needy honors God.