Whatever year that you’re reading this, I promise you, it’s on time. I believe God is calling you and I to pause, pray, and act upon ways to help the poor and needy this year. And I know life gets busy, sis. Trust me. I know. But people in our world who are lost, alone, hungry, homeless, and without the basic needs of the day simply need to know that someone out there, cares about their well-being. And as believers, we know that, that someone who cares the deepest is Jesus Christ.
Now, before I get into the 10 Ways to Help the Poor and Needy this Year, personally, I can’t lie - this biblical principle hit me like a ton of bricks recently! I truly felt convicted. I thought to myself, “I’m doing a lot to encourage and equip the body of Christ and I love evangelizing. I also love spending my quiet time with the Lord, but what have I been doing lately to help the poor and needy?” I immediately started thinking about how I could do more in this area - this year. Now.
In searching the Scriptures, I came across several Bible verses that speak directly to us about giving to the poor. One of them was found in Proverbs 19:17, “Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will repay him for his deed.” On the flip-side, there are many passages of Scripture that speak to us about helping those who are our fellow Christian brothers and sisters like Romans 12:13, “Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality.”
You see, even those in the body of Christ are sometimes in need of food, shelter, and financial assistance. And we are called to be there to help in their time of need as well. First John 3:17-18 tells us, “If someone has enough money to live well and sees a brother or sister in need but shows no compassion-how can God’s love be in that person? Dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other, let us show the truth in action.” Amen!
I believe the reason why this principle is so important to the Lord is because people need to see Christ moving in their lives. When you and I act and help those who are poor and needy, most times they are so overjoyed that they can’t help but say, “Thank You, Lord!” They are giving God the glory. And that’s what it’s all about, sis! ;-)
With that being said, as promised, here are 10 Ways to Help the Poor and Needy this Year…
1.) Go downtown or look around in your community to see with the eyes of the Lord, who needs help, food, or financial assistance. Be intentional.
2.) Call your local shelter to see if they are in need of volunteers to help feed the homeless.
3.) Join the Missions Team at your church to go on local and/or out-of-state mission trips to help those who are less fortunate.
4.) Give to Missions online (one that you believe in and trust).
5.) Call community organizations that help those who are in need of tangible items, but also offer to share life, resources, or vocational skills with those who are a part of their program.
6.) Pay attention to needs on Facebook from your friends and reach out personally to help.
7.) If you know of someone in your church that needs clothing, food, financial assistance, or if you see the need of a struggling single mother or widow, help them out as the Holy Spirit leads you.
8.) Go through your old clothes and shoes, bag them up, and bring them to the church or a homeless shelter (pay attention to the seasons and make sure that they are in good shape to wear – remember do unto others as you would have them do unto you). ;-)
9.) Give to your local or nearest pregnancy resource center. You would be amazed at how many mothers saved and unsaved could use your help by donating pampers, blankets, clothing, bottles, etc. (I volunteered for one for nearly 5 years, so I know from experience).
10.) Lastly, bless someone anonymously. Someone that you know is in need of assistance. Be a blessing in disguise. Jesus tells us in Matthew 6:3, “But when you give to someone in need, don’t let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. Give your gifts in private, and your Father, who sees everything, will reward you.”
These are just a few ways that I hope will help light a fresh fire in you to help those who are poor and in need. Personally, I’m looking forward to not only helping others myself, but also doing it with my family. I want my kids to understand this important biblical principle as well. I’ve already got a couple of bags of clothes packed up and ready to go! Let’s do this, sis – this year.
Remember, Jesus is coming back soon! And those who endure unto the end shall be saved. So let’s be ready from the Inside Out!
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