My friend, may I ask you a question? Why does it take an effort to seek-out the needs that exist all around us before we fall back on charity? Is it far easier to drop a check into a plate. Yet, if we stopped for a moment every time we made out a charitable check and allowed it to speak to us about true charity, would it be far more honest?
My friend, life’s a story, welcome to This Passing Day. I’m Mark Brunner.
When I put that offering envelope into the collection plate each Sunday, it often leaves me with a sense of regret. That envelope was an opportunity prior to it dropping into the plate. I guess what’s always bothered me is this. Has the extent to my giving become nothing more than a mechanical slipping of a check into a yellow envelope once a week? Has the gift become little more than a statement of support for my church, as opposed to a token of true charity? Is that little yellow envelope trying to tell me something each week as I mindlessly drop it into the plate?
Opportunities to live our charity abound. The trick is watching for them and seizing those opportunities.
Here’s a story: One afternoon in 1953 reporters and city officials gathered at a Chicago railroad station to honor a Nobel Peace Prize winner. As the train came to a stop, Dr. Albert Schweitzer stepped from the train. Cameras flashed and officials approached him with hands outstretched. They began telling him how honored they were to meet him. He politely thanked them and then, looking over their heads, asked if he could be excused. Walking through the crowd he reached the side of an elderly woman struggling with two large suitcases. He picked up the bags and with a smile, escorted her to a bus; whereupon he returned to the greeting party and apologized for his absence. In response to Schweitzer’s action, one member of the reception committee replied, “That’s the first time I ever saw a sermon walking.” (Jeff Strite.)
It’s easy to put a generous check into a church envelope but it’s often downright hard to put a dollar bill into the hands of someone who is down on their luck. Why? Often we’re not sensitive to charitable opportunities like the good doctor. It’s takes effort to seek-out the needs that exist all around us and it’s far easier to drop a check into a plate. Yet, if we stopped for a moment every time we made out that check and allowed it to speak to us about true charity, our hearts might be moved to seek-out those opportunities that lie beyond that little yellow envelope. When we do, when we’re willing to put that dollar into the hand of a street person or write out a check to a heart fund or food bank, our generosity becomes a sermon walking, in search of the needs of others if only we take the time to listen to that little yellow envelope.
"Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own" (Matt 6:34)
We pray. Lord You have designed each of us to be a sermon walking, truly a representative and disciple of Your Son Jesus Christ. You have given us Your Word to learn by and Your Spirit to profit by. Yet, we so often fall back on ourselves when You present us with opportunities to be charitable, in service toward and helpful to others in You Kingdom. Forgive us when we rely on our own intuition for making charitable decisions and help us to discover that each of us is a sermon walking if only we will allow ourselves to be the Christian disciples You have designed us to be. In Jesus name we pray. Amen!
May this passing day honor our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and be a blessing to you and everyone you meet. Find a stranger and say hello. Don't let another day pass without your day blessing someone else.
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<firstname.lastname@example.org> From Beech Springs, God bless you for Jesus sake.