God’s View on Poverty Part 2

July 26th, 2013

In Part 1 of this post, we discussed, “Does God desire anyone to be poor?”, what God says in Scripture about His view of poverty, and how poverty came into God’s creation.  If you missed Part 1, please use the above Series link to read it first.  Again, it would be impossible to cover the subejct in its entirety here, but we believe this series will give you some clear answers.

Why do so many religions associate poverty with piety?

It is easy to see where the view of poverty and piety developed because any type of crisis usually causes a person to look for help from Someone greater than him or her self. This does not make the crisis good or “from God” just because you need someone else to help you. Another common religious connection between poverty and piety developed from people seeing those who were wealthy living in ways that were prideful, selfish, and abusive. However, wealth is not in itself evil or make people evil as there are many wealthy people in the world who spend their lives as philanthropists, using their wealth to help the needy.

A multitude of Scriptures show that God does not desire anyone to be poor.

Before you misunderstand that statement, remember that God is our perfect Father. Just as a loving parent would never wish poverty or any other crisis or harm on his or her child, neither does a loving God desire anything harmful on the people who are the focus of His unfailing love. Due to the corruption in the world from the fall of man, poverty can come to a person from so many sources — government corruption, natural disaster, economic collapse, mishandling of money, Immerse Yourself in the Full Healing Contemplation Here »

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God’s View on Poverty Part 1

July 16th, 2013

Table of contents for God's View on Poverty

  1. God’s View on Poverty Part 1

An often asked question by readers is, “Does God desire people to be poor?”

Scripture does address God’s view on poverty. Though I cannot cover all possible aspects of poverty in one post, I think this article will give you some clear answers.

God specifically mentions His watchful care over the poor.

It is important to realize that this is not a matter of favoritism, because God speaks against that and promises His unfailing love to all who seek Him, but a matter of special reassurance. The poor are often neglect or forgotten by the societies in which they live. Anyone who has been in poverty understands the struggles with the feeling of abandonment, hopelessness, and that there is no one who cares. Fully understanding a person’s circumstances, God specifically speaks to remind the poor that He cares, is paying attention, Immerse Yourself in the Full Healing Contemplation Here »

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Heritage: A Matter of Character Gained and Given

April 21st, 2013

The course of people’s lives are forever changed by both the heritage we receive and impart.

A few years back, the focus of several weeks of my life was split between normal life responsibilities and the planning of a reception for my parents’ 50th wedding anniversary. The final week was particularly full with the finalization of all the food, decorations, and communications. The event was a great success in many ways. There were the initial, typical visible ways, such as the food and decorations which everyone enjoyed. However, the aspect of lasting impression from the event on my brother, spouse, and myself were the responses of people, expressing their love for the impact my parents had on their lives.

Some people, though elderly and feeble, traveled long distances to be there. Others were involved in leadership of major community events, yet slipped away for a little while because they, too, did not feel it was an option to miss the opportunity to say, “Thank You,” and honor my parents for the way their lives have been forever changed by knowing them. My parents have expended the energy of their lives befriending, comforting, encouraging and carrying others through the good and bad events of life and it showed through people’s amazing responses.

This event is a good example for us of the importance of being aware of the people in our lives who pour into us a lasting, positive impact .  It is a heritage that changes us and then allows us to impart that change to others.

Our lives are changed forever by the small kindnesses that a few, key people stop to impart to our lives.  Similarly, it is often the Immerse Yourself in the Full Healing Contemplation Here »

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Be Grateful and Enjoy the Benefits

November 22nd, 2012

Reading Level: Leisurely

Do you have a clear perspective of daily being grateful for the life you are now living—in spite of any unreached goals—and for what you already possess?  Or do you become easily disgruntled due to comparing your life and possessions with those of others’?

The other day I read an illustrated lesson for children on thankfulness in which the teacher had hidden various amounts of candy under the students’ chairs in the classroom. As the children came in and sat down, they settled in for the day’s lesson, content in their present circumstances, having nothing extra beyond that with which they entered the room. After the teacher announced that there was candy hidden under each chair, the students immediately became discontent upon discovering that the amounts of candy were not the same. The main points the teacher drew out for the students’ from that experience were:

1. Each student was content when he or she came in the classroom, having only the things that were already in their possession. They could have easily continued to be content by being grateful solely for what they already had.

2. When the students’ compared the varying amounts of candy they had received, they were immediately discontent; yet, each of them now possessed more than when they came in the room. Each of them could have felt appreciation for the fact that they had received a gift and had more than they did a few moments before.

When you start the comparison game between your life and the lives of others Immerse Yourself in the Full Healing Contemplation Here »

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Choosing a Long Life of Abundance

March 25th, 2012

Reading Level: Gratifying

Each of us desires a long, abundant life with our loved ones. Yet, do your daily decisions work for or against that desire?

These past 2 months have been one of those seasons of life that come to all of us. Tomorrow is a funeral for a friend that died suddenly and unexpectedly. Another friend has been in ICU for weeks. The first person had lived a life that was very abusive to his physical health for years, having just made a change in the recent past. The other friend has lived the more typical unhealthy life of too many sodas and mostly processed foods. She has had many health issues that have drastically affected her family and friends for the whole past year and has now been in ICU for a good part of 2 months and still has life-threatening issues going on. Both should have had a good 20 to 30 more years of living an abundant life, loving life and loving family, but the choice of poor daily health habits stole the precious gift of long abundant life not only from them, but from their friends and families.

We need to be reminded of how essential the little daily choices regarding health-food, sleep, exercise-are truly the ultimate decision for a long life.

Every day that you get up, you make seemingly insignificant choices regarding what you eat, whether or not you skip exercise, how you deal with stress, if you get enough sleep. These decisions come so frequently that one usually makes them almost without thinking. Each little decision not to do what is beneficial to your physical health is, in actuality, a decision of whether or not to embrace a long abundant life, with time to live life, enjoying and loving your family and friends, and giving them the gift of that time to love you and enjoy your presence on this earth. Isn’t that what each of us want? Yet it seems so easy to choose otherwise. There is a quote worth remembering, Immerse Yourself in the Full Healing Contemplation Here »

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A Year of Favor

January 3rd, 2012

Reading Level: Leisurely

Attracting the favor you need and desire in your life this year is contingent upon believing you will receive it.

Though the “Law of Attraction” may be a contemporary term, the concept is an ageless one. We have discussed at times in the past the concept of the Law of Attraction, of believing that good will come to you and visualizing it. God Himself, in His covenant with Abraham, asked him to believe for the fulfillment of Abraham’s “impossible” dream for a son when Sarah was over 75 and to visualize the stars in the sky as being his numerous descendents. (See the post Visualizing Your Dreams)

A few months ago, I was doing a word study on the concept of favor, as I was in need of favor during an upcoming business transaction. I was truly amazed at how frequently favor is promised by God and how much it is a part of His covenant with mankind.

I want each of you to believe this year for the favor you both need and desire from your relationships/interactions with God and people.

As you read through the quotes below, visualize the favor spoken of as being yours. Put your name into the quotes. Begin the year believing that you already have the favor of God and will grow in your favor with people, regardless of the circumstance. Continue throughout this year to believe and visualize that you are a person of favor and receive the favor that is yours!

I will look on you with favor and make you fruitful and increase your numbers, and I will keep my covenant with you. Le 26:9

O Lord, let your ear be attentive to the prayer of this your servant…Give your servant success today by granting him favor in the presence of this man. Ne 1:11

You will arise and have compassion, for it is time to show favor to her; the appointed time has come. Ps 102:13

Now God had caused the official to show favor and sympathy to him. Da 1:9 Immerse Yourself in the Full Healing Contemplation Here »

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Grateful Focus in Economic Drought

November 28th, 2011

After a year of severe economic crises in various countries, I came across a true, challenging story to the wisdom of a grateful focus even in economic drought.  The story is of a farmer’s response to physical drought, but the wisdom still applies to the stresses created by our world economies. 

When R.H.Schuller was growing up, drought ravaged their family farm. They prayed for rain that never came. His Dad, who normally harvested 100 wagon loads of corn, reaped only half a wagon full. Schuller says, “I’ll never forget it. His calloused hands holding ours as he looked up and prayed, ‘Thank you Lord, I’ve lost nothing. I’ve regained all the seed I planted in spring.’ While other farmers were saying, ‘We lost 90 or 100 loads,’ my father told me, ‘Never count the might-have-beens or you will be defeated. Never look at what you have lost, only look at what you have left.’ ” 1

Many of you have lost much financially this year.  I challenge you to remove your focus from what you’ve lost –so you will not be defeated– and focus on every incredible good that you still have in life, be it health, a home, family, friends, past victories, dreams for the future. Be undefeated!  Keep a grateful focus on what you still have!

1 word4U2day

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Heritage: Character Gained and Given

October 18th, 2009

Reading Level: Gratifying

The course of people’s lives are forever changed by both the heritage we receive and impart.

The focus of the past several weeks has been split between normal life responsibilities and the planning of a reception for my parents’ 50th wedding anniversary. This week was particularly full with the finalization of all the food, decorations, and communications. The event was a great success in many ways. There were the initial, typical visible ways, such as the food and decorations which everyone enjoyed. However, the aspect of lasting impression from the event on my brother, spouse, and myself were the responses of people, expressing their love for the impact my parents had on their lives.

Some people, though elderly and feeble, traveled long distances to be there. Others were involved in leadership of major community events, yet slipped away for a little while because they, too, did not feel it was an option to miss the opportunity to say, “Thank You,” and honor my parents for the way their lives have been forever changed by knowing them. My parents have expended the energy of their lives befriending, comforting, encouraging and carrying others through the good and bad events of life and it showed through people’s amazing responses.

The event was a rare opportunity to catch a glimpse into the heritage we have received and the lasting cords of positive impact that have been woven into the communities in which my parents have lived.

The first person to arrive was an elderly widow. She had hand written and framed a letter expressing her love to my parents for the kindness shown to her and her late husband. My dad had visited him repeatedly at their home while the man was dying of cancer. The lady has ceaselessly recalled my dad singing to her husband to bring him comfort in those final days. Another person had a letter enclosed in a gift, expressing how my parents had laughed and cried with them during the ups and downs of her life. Immerse Yourself in the Full Healing Contemplation Here »

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Reach to be Complete

October 2nd, 2009

Reading Level: Gratifying

Is your life focus right now on the main problem area of your life?

What is that controlling area? A job, finances, marriage, other personal relationships, health? Though we must give attention to the problem area if it is going to improve, it is healthier and more effective to be focused on completeness or wholeness than give the totality of your attention to a problem.

Since the beginning of creation, God’s desire for mankind is to be complete.

At the beginning of creation, all was in perfection and harmony. Everything mankind needed was readily available. Yes, man’s rebellion brought devastation, but God still desires for your life to return to a state of wholeness or completeness, and so should you.

Look at this greeting out of Scripture:

1Sam. 25:6 And say this, “May all be well for you: peace be to you and your house and all you have.”

We are to speak the desire for all to be well in others’ lives; certainly, we should speak and desire it over our own lives.

Let’s take a more in depth look with this quote:

Jer.33:9 They will be in awe and will tremble at the abundant prosperity and peace I provide.

God speaks here of people being in awe, both mentally and physically at the prosperity and peace He provides for His people. Sounds simple, but, as I’ve mentioned before, much is lost in the translation to English. Look at the depth and expanse of completeness in life (or wholeness — whichever term is easier for you to envision) that is intended to be ours: Immerse Yourself in the Full Healing Contemplation Here »

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God’s View on Poverty

November 6th, 2008

Reading Level: Gratifying

An often asked question by readers is, “Does God desire people to be poor?”

Scripture does address God’s view on poverty. Though I cannot cover all possible aspects of poverty in one post, I think this article will give you clear answers.

God specifically mentions His watchful care over the poor.

It is important to realize that this is not a matter of favoritism, because God speaks against that and promises His unfailing love to all who seek Him, but a matter of special reassurance. The poor are often neglect or forgotten by the societies in which they live. Anyone who has been in poverty understands the struggles with the feeling of abandonment, hopelessness, and that there is no one who cares. Fully understanding a person’s circumstances, God specifically speaks to remind the poor that He cares, is paying attention, and is attentive to their requests for help.

Here are a few quotes in which God expresses His attentiveness to the poor:

Isa 41:17 The poor and needy search for water, but there is none; their tongues are parched with thirst. But I the LORD will answer them; I, the God of Israel, will not forsake them.

Ex 22:22,23 Do not take advantage of a widow or an orphan. If you do and they cry out to me, I will certainly hear their cry.

De 15:4,7 However, there should be no poor among you, for in the land the LORD your God is giving you to possess as your inheritance, he will richly bless you. If there is a poor man among your brothers in any of the towns of the land that the LORD your God is giving you, do not be hardhearted or tightfisted toward your poor brother. Immerse Yourself in the Full Healing Contemplation Here »

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Is Poverty Ever From God?

July 10th, 2008

Reading Level: Gratifying

In most realms of religion, there seems to be a prevalent concept that poverty makes a person more pious.

The added deduction from this concept is that God sends poverty on His people to teach them or purify them. There are several possible reasons for the development of this line of thought. First, difficulty does often cause a person to reach out to God, to someone greater than himself, resulting in character growth. Hence, people assume God sent it. Scripture actually says that God works to bring good out of evil done to us (Gen. 50:20; Deut. 23:5; Rom. 8:28). A second possible reason for the development of this poverty concept is the misquoting of the Scripture about money. Scripture actually says that the “love” of money leads to all kinds of evil, not wealth itself.

God expresses that poverty is destructive to people, a trait contrary to God’s nature.

Though more examples could be given, these two make it clear that poverty is not a type of “learning tool” sent by God. God says,

  • Poverty is the ruin of the poor (NIV). [Another translation-] The destruction of the poor is their poverty (NKJV Pr. 10:15).
  • [The context of this quote is speaking about laziness…] and poverty will come on you like a bandit and scarcity like an armed man making you helpless (AMP).

In contrast to the idea of poverty being from God, the traits of ruin, destruction, and other harm are listed in Scripture as having their origin in satan. Pay particular attention to Jesus’ description of the contrasting life God gives. Immerse Yourself in the Full Healing Contemplation Here »

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