She opens her hand to the poor
and reaches out her hands to the needy.
Throughout scripture, we can see where it is good to help those in need. The example of an Excellent Wife in Proverbs 31 is one such example. However, in a world where greed is good and sacrifice is scorned, it’s hard to find anyone who is joyfully serving others while expecting nothing in return.
The media screams about how much you deserve. More is never enough. Bigger is always better.
The world tells us how much more satisfied we will be if we get all this new stuff…. all for ourselves. So we continue to pile on the clutter, the chaos, and the debt not realizing we are getting further and further away from experiencing that satisfaction in life that we so desperately desire. Somehow the more we get, the more miserable we are.
But we usually don’t see it. We can’t see the connection between the increasing amount of stuff we have and the decreasing amount of satisfaction we have.
Something is definitely wrong here. As usual, what the world says is right is most definitely not.
All this focus on ourselves and our own desires clouds our perspectives. We are in our own way.
Jesus said, “Sell your possessions, and give to the needy. Provide yourselves with moneybags that do not grow old, with a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also,” (Luke 12:33-34).
We will never find true treasure here in this world… our treasure is in Christ alone. No matter how much or how little we have here on earth, it is all nothing in comparison to what we have in Christ.
So if we know this truth and we focus on this truth, we can be more open and available to sharing all that we have in this world, whether it be monetary or something else entirely.
Today, many of us simply do not have a ton of money lying around to just hand out to others regardless of how much need they are in. Sure, we’d love to — but it’s just not feasible. Thankfully, opening our wallets isn’t the only way we can help those in need. Sometimes, in fact, it’s not even the best way.
Here are a few ways you can help those in need today even if you don’t have any money to spare.
Share Your Time
One of the first things we can share of ourselves is our time. We all have the same amount of time everyday. 24 hours. And if we’re honest… I mean really honest… we can admit to wasting at least a little bit of it each day.
What if instead wasting time today, you reached out and helped someone in need?
It’s amazing what we can do in someone else’s life when we dedicate just a few moments of our time to help them out.
So whether your vice is scrolling through social media newsfeed, binge-watching Netflix, gossiping about others’ lives, or hitting the snooze button for an hour, there’s something in your life today that is using your time but doesn’t benefit your life or anyone else’s.
Serve others in need by sharing your time.
Share Your Skills
Another way we can help those in need is by sharing some of the skills we’ve learned in life. Maybe you are a skilled woodworker and you know someone who needs their deck repaired. Or you can build websites and you know a friend without the ability to hire someone needs help building hers.
There are a myriad of ways we can use our skills to reach out and help another who is in need. In my experience, those unpaid acts of service are often the most rewarding — so never hesitate to reach out and help where you are able.
Share Your Resources
Most of us have an abundance of excess in our pantries, closets, and all the other nooks and crannies in our homes.
What if instead of storing up our own treasures for an uncertain future, we shared what we had with those who actually need it right now?
Maybe you have excess clothing, canned goods, dishes, baby stuff, or even a bed that someone you know could use today. What is stopping you from letting loose your grip on “things” and letting love lead you to share?
Share Your Attention
In our selfie-society, it is so easy to get caught up in the me-me-me of it all. We are focused on where we are going, what we are doing, what we look like, what people think of us. All of our attention is on ourselves.
What if for a moment we took our eyes off of self and took a look around?
What would we see?
We’d see a world full of people who are broken, hurting, and in need. Sometimes all someone needs is to know that they are not alone in their pain. Having someone sit with us and hear our stories, our heartbreaks, and our triumphs can be one of the most soothing things to our soul.
God often comforts us through the words and compassion of another.
Be willing to stop and give your attention to someone else. Be concerned about their wellbeing. Ask about their struggles and show genuine empathy for their pain. We may not always be able to pay for someone else’s physical needs, but we can all stop and pay attention to their spiritual needs.
Share Your Faith
One of the most important things we can share with others is our faith.
We can give them all the riches of this world, but if they don’t have Christ, all of it is meaningless.
As you see someone in need, reach out to them with the hope that is in Christ alone. Share with them the truth of God’s Word, the reality that though this life can be absolutely horrendous, we have a Father in heaven Who is absolutely good. Tell them of the hope that He gave us by sending His Son to die on the cross for our sins. Invite them to get to know Him more. Pray that God would open their hearts and make Himself at home there.
This is the most important thing that we can share with those in need…
As Christians, we aren’t called to crave, collect, and hoard the things of this world.
God calls us to let go of all of the things of this world and cling to Him alone. He is the only true source of satisfaction. No matter where else we look, we’ll discover that whatever brief pleasure we may get from the things of this outside world, it quickly fades.
So instead of hoarding and keeping All.The.Things, reach out and share what you can with another in need — and while you do so, share the hope that is in Christ alone.
What other ways can you think of to share with those in need today?