Skip to main content

The poor


In reading the Psalms this morning (108-113), a couple themes kept arising from the pages and one of those is the continuing reference to the ways in which God will redeem and rescue the poor and needy on this earth.

Two excerpts:

Ps. 109:30-31 "With my mouth I will greatly extol the Lord; in the great throng I will praise him. For he stands at the right hand of the needy one, to save his life from those who condemn him."

Ps. 113:5-7 "Who is like the Lord our God, the One who sits enthroned on high, who stoops down to look on the heavens and the earth? He raises the poor from the dust and lifts the needy from the ash heap."

As I finished reading these Psalms and opened my browser to come jot down some thoughts on this blog, I was greeted with an additional reminder of realities of those who are poor and in need today in our world. The spotlight for Operation World today is Mozambique, one of the poorest nations on earth. Operation World is a website that provides demographical data and prayer requests for a different nation each day.

The Son of God, who's prayers and heart truly are reflected in the Psalms (as I am learning through reading Bonhoeffer), said that the "Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor." (Luke 4:18) And what good news it is! News that the troubles of this life are not to great to be overcome. That Jesus offers redemption and forgiveness and peace and hope to all.

I am reminded of a story I once heard from a lady who spent some time doing missions work in Rwanda. She was ministering to a woman in a village who had very little. Her daughter had just died of AIDS and besides the clothes on her back, she had only two possessions a tiny hut and a bucket to carry water in. One day that bucket was stolen and the rains were beating down on her hut. The winds had torn away one wall of her little hut and she sat inside cradling her grandaughter, who was facing a life withouth either of her parents. The missionary lady was talking with her about her life back in America and she asked the Rwandan woman, "If I could tell my friends back in America something, what would you want me to tell them?" She responded simply, "Tell them all that I really need is Jesus."

Stories like that sometimes sound far fetched for us in America who have so much, but it is the truth. And the point is not to paint a picture of all of life in Africa. I lived there for a little while and I know how much many of them don't want westerners to see only the poverty of that great continent. But the truth remains. Poverty and AIDS are rampant and I don't want to ignore it. UNICEF recently estimated that by 2010, over 15 million African children will have one or more parents who have died of AIDS.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Pilgrims Looking for the Sun

x

Pilgrims Looking for the Sun
This weekend across America, our transportation and information highways will glut with millions of eclipse-chasers travelling from the far corners of the globe order to find an unobstructed view along the “total eclipse” zone spanning the United States from Oregon to South Carolina. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime moment for many. A total eclipse of this nature hasn’t spanned this country for a century, though, the upcoming century holds many such eclipses in store. I myself will be joining the ranks of eclipse-chasers, making a relatively brief journey south to my parent’s property in Sparta, IL, which is comfortably within the totality zone.
I’m a latecomer in educating myself about this rare event. Only after watching two videos (by Smarter Every Day and Vox) and discussing the astronomically phenomenal event with my friend, Kacey, did my eyes begin to open in wonder and amazement at the unique phenomena of a total eclipse. Previously, I thought, oh, I’ll be…

Leatherbound Books

If you're into reading or just like thinking that you are, you should check out LibraryThing. Pretty sweet site actually. I have many leather bound books in my online catalogue. You can see for yourself: http://www.librarything.com/catalog/jdkinglt. The site allows you to see users who have similar reading tastes as you and then you can check out their book reviews and other reading selections. I didn't have time yet to upload the Bearenstein Bears books I read back in high scho...I mean kindergarten. Mostly--well entirely, actually--my catalogue is filled with some books I've had the chance to read since the start of college. The point when I began to take reading seriously. Useless site? Ah...I wouldn't say so. It may help me to broaden my reading intake a bit. Or, maybe I'm just a sucker for these novel sites that allow us to connect with others and share knowledge.

What were my memorable books of 2016?

I don't read nearly as much these days. Or maybe not as much as I'd prefer in some idealistic (unreal) world where I get to spend a few hours a day soaking up good literature.

Mostly, I'm reading Goodnight, Gorilla, There's a Rumble in the Jungle or Fancy Nancy. (Let's be honest. I actually like children's literature.) And at bedtime, Anna has fallen in love with (routine?) my narration of homegrown stories. (In case you're wondering, I'm a terrible storyteller. I wish I were that dad whose stories inspire her to one day look back and marvel at the whimsical, imaginative stories I cooked up at bedtime, but alas, probably not. I'm learning slowly, though, at least about what kind of story she will likely enjoy.)

But in the margins of here and there, I have found time for a sampling of books in 2016. Here are some memorable ones:

More of Less, Joshua Becker

A helpful guide on minimizing excess (possessions) so you can focus on what's most important…