Homeless in Sugamo 2Last night we had a very special dedication time for our Storehouse food distribution ministry. Everything has been done with excellence. We’re well prepared and ready to go. Tomorrow the doors will open and we’ll be feeding the hungry and providing groceries to families in need.

As part of our church family’s time together, I shared some general thoughts about feeding and serving from God’s Word. They’re random, but I wanted to post them here…

  • The Old Testament provided for the poor by instructing Israel to leave provisions for the poor and strangers.
  • The prophets of the Old Testament not only condemned Israel for spiritual idolatry, but for forsaking the poor and failing to honor principles of justice.
  • Jesus placed His emphasis on teaching and preaching, but wrapped up in His mission was also a mission of mercy. He fed, He healed, He restored.
  • The early church practiced the principle of providing for people struggling financially, first within the church in Jerusalem, and then as other New Testament churches provided for the church in Jerusalem.
  • The epistles present some boundaries such as requiring people to work if they can and asking families to be the first line of help, placing the church second, but the admonition remains that we’re to provide for the poor.
  • Jesus didn’t feed everyone. He could have, but He didn’t. His mission was still spiritual at its core, not physical.
  • When we allow physical needs to steal the emphasis away from the need for the gospel, we really just make earth a nicer place from which people can go to hell.
  • We ought to help, heal, and feed because Jesus did it, and for the glory of God.
  • Serving can open doors for the gospel, but we should serve even if no doors ever open, and we should serve without expecting repayment of any kind.
  • We are most like God when we are giving, sharing, and caring for people.
  • Every church ought to serve its community. If your church closed, would your community notice?
  • Serving people is part of living missionally, it’s part of the ongoing lifestyle of communicating the gospel to our culture.
  • Thank God He gave us His Son, when we least deserved Him, and when we were bankrupt and unable to pay for the price of our own sins.

Like I said, random, but I believe these thoughts represent a comprehensive and panoramic biblical message of helping and serving.

Last night, a few of us guys were standing around discussing deep theological matters… well, actually, we were talking about how awesome Star Wars was when it first released! We reminisced about that great line from Yoda to Luke as he trained him. Luke said, “I’ll try harder.” Yoda’s line? “There is no try, only do!”

When it comes to serving, giving, and feeding, do. Don’t debate and argue. Do. Don’t wonder what you’ll get out of it. Do. Don’t worry about whether people are grateful. Do. And whatsoever you do, do it as unto the Lord!

On a sidenote, an angel visited us. A dear woman attended the service who just happened to be passing through town. As she quietly slipped out, she happened to hand a check to one of the ladies for $1,000, dedicated to Storehouse. Thank You, Oh Mighty God!

Creative Commons License photo credit: jamesfischer

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