I want to share with you a moment burned into my mind as a poignant testimony to generosity. My daughter, Sarah and I, experienced this moment in the city of Cerro de Pasco, Peru, in 2002. In the course of ministering to a small church in this town located at the top of the Andean mountains, we met street children who were collecting trash or anything of value they could find on the streets, in order to garner a handful of coins.
Although home to one of the deepest silver mines in the world, Cerro de Pasco’s 70,000 inhabitants are mostly poor. One would think that any money a child could scrape would be zealously guarded and used for food or clothing. But these joyful children tithed from what they had in order to give to missionaries. It was a demonstration of the poorest giving to the poor to honor and expand God’s work. Someday I hope to learn how God blessed them!
Genesis 1:25—So God made the wildlife of the earth according to their kinds, the livestock according to their kinds, and creatures that crawl on the ground according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good.
I just finished reading the best book I ever read concerning Biblical principles on giving wisely. The author is Jonathan Martin and the title of his book is Giving Wisely? You can find and purchase it from www.amazon.com.
Luke 16:10-12—Whoever is faithful in very little is also faithful in much, and whoever is unrighteous in very little is also unrighteous in much. So if you have not been faithful with the unrighteous money, who will trust you with what is genuine? And if you have not been faithful with what belongs to someone else, who will give you what is your own?
Bryan and I watched an exciting High School football semi-final game at PGE Stadium in Portland. We were excited to cheer for the Southridge Skyhawks, the team he helped manage last year. They played superbly, won their game and will play for the state championship. I imagine it must be a pretty heady feeling to win big and feel the love and adulation of adoring fans. Unfortunately, fame and fortune are all too fleeting. The need to be noticed and to be important lasts for a while until some new hero or star emerges.
Have you ever wondered whom God notices?
I’ve never had a ministry to the poor. Few of my friends are financially needy and those I work and live around are middle or upper-class families. While my finances have often been sparse, compared to most in the world I am incredibly well off. So, I wondered what it would be like to spend so many hours each week helping those at the center of ever-converging problems from which escape seems bleak and overwhelming.
Once upon a time a man and woman lived off Dutch Canyon Road in Scappoose. They had six children all of whom were in their 20’s. The father was a wealthy man, well beloved in his community, but terminally-ill with cancer. One day while reason still lingered, he asked his beloved wife to invite their children for dinner and an important announcement. Curious and concerned they all came.