Yes, it is!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Costly Sacrifices?

This is the title of today's devotion of day 3 of the 14-day Bible reading plan on Compassion that I'm following. The scripture reference is I Chronicles 21:15-30.  I have to admit that I was a little confused about how this had anything to do with compassion.  I felt that it had more to do with stewardship.  The devotion included this quote from the late Larry Burkett: It's a sad commentary today that many christians give into God's kingdom things they simply don't want. God wants the best of what we have - not the leftovers."  Larry Burkett may have applied this to christiandom but isn't this true for so many of us, christian or not?  There are many people out there who could give well above what they're giving.  And there are those who give way beyond.  
I've read this devotion at least 3 times to try to better understand what it has to do with compassion.   I still don't understand all. I just know that even though we are considered to be a rich nation, the sad truth is that there is a very large population of people living in poverty. Some of those people are just lazy and expect others to bail them (i.e. my parents' son).  They have no problem receiving government assistance instead of trying to better themselves. I have no tolerance for financial laziness and so I have very little compassion for those people.  There are those who, through no fault of their own, must depend on the government and the kindness of others to help them afford to live.  I have great compassion for those people.  There is the working poor.  These are the people who work so hard in order to be independent and self-sufficient but are still barely able to.  I have compassion for those people because I've been there. When I first began to live on my own, I was barely able to do it on one salary so I got a second job because I was very determined to be self-sufficient and independent.  Through all of this, I continued to pay for my own college tuition until I was awarded a scholarship to finish my last 2 years of college.  I like to believe that my generous giving paid off.  It definitely wasn't what I would consider a costly sacrifice. There were some difficult times but I still continued to tithe at that time and give charitably.
Despite us being a rich nation, we are still separated by classes; higher class, middle class, and lower class.  Unfortunately, all too often, the lower class is looked down upon. No matter what class each of us live, we all need to have more compassion (and perhaps generosity) for the poor disabled, the working poor, the senior citizen on a tight budget.  And most importantly, for the children who live in such abject poverty that they go to bed hungry at night.
Hopefully, tomorrow's devotion will be better for me to understand and do a review.  If anyone can help me better understand today's devotion and how it relates to compassion, I am open to some feedback.

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