Thursday, May 26, 2011

People Exist!

Did you know that people exists? Often the people we come into contact with each day are nothing more than nameless faces we view as being available to meet some need for us or to provide us with some kind of service. The reality is that people all around us have lots of needs. You may even be someone with lots of needs. Often times the needs we have in our lives come to us without invitation and are not welcomed guests. At other times they simply occur because of the change of our situations or circumstances. Either way there are many needs people are experiencing from finances, illness, joblessness, relationships, decisions, to spiritual issues and needs. In life it sometimes seems that we have more questions than we have answers. It is at this point in our lives when we discover whether or not the faith we profess is genuine. Faith in the Lord is much more than just wishful thinking, an attitude of hope, or an experience of good will. In fact, faith is more than something you just feel. Many people confuse emotions and feelings with faith. They come to church and they’re moved emotionally, they're inspired, and they're stimulated. But that doesn’t mean they are walking in faith or even that they possess faith.

The Bible says faith is not just something we possess and keep to ourselves, but it is something we do. In other words, faith takes action on behalf of another person in the love of Jesus. Let’s say I go out on the street and I see someone who is homeless and destitute. I see that person is hungry, cold, in need of clothing, or in need of shelter. Would I be showing great faith if I walked up and said, “Buck up camper! Don't worry, be happy! Put on a happy face! God bless you?” It doesn’t take much faith to do that. Faith carries compassion. Faith says, “I’ll do anything I can to stop your hurt, minimize your pain, and meet your needs.”

Throughout the New Testament, the witnesses say Jesus was moved with compassion for people. Jesus showed us that faith is practical and it takes action on behalf of others. When we see a need, we do something about it. We do not need to just toss out a quick, “Well, I'll pray for you” and move on without meeting a need or never praying. The Bible says we show our faith by what we do. James said it this way: “Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to him, ‘Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed,’ but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it?” James 2:15-16 (NIV)

I just want to encourage you to look around at the people you come in contact with everyday and find a way to invest yourself in their lives and minister to them. The truth is that by ministering to and encouraging them, this exercise of faith will minister to and encourage you. Additionally, you will grow your own faith as you become obedient to God’s will. Sure, it will take some of your time and maybe some of your money, but in the end you will be blessed.