Shifting from Church needs to People’s needs

10 06 2016

I remember when Jomie and I dropping by to see an extended family. Sitting beside an elderly lady having a conversation asking and answering questions. And to cut the story short, before we left we bought her some medicines for her kidney maintenance and a dozen of tin sheets to replace her roofing that’s leaking when it rains.  Spent about $120 on that visit that day. 

“I am a change man.” I said to myself as I went out her house. 

When I was pastoring a church it only taught me to become selfish. I want a church building and facilities. I want members to help me pay for it ‘in the name’ of the church. I taught people to give ‘to the church,’ of course what that means is the ‘building.’ But when I decided to ‘be the church’ I started getting rid of unnecessary things to make church ‘simple.’ Church is people, not building with a staple. 

When visiting families and friends my questions started to change. The topic of my bible studies becomes them (because they are the church right?) It becomes more personal and directed to their need rather than sharing what church ‘building’ needs. I learn to listen more instead of talking ‘about’ my church. My eyes started recognizing things that needed to be fix around their house rather than what I can ‘remember’ that I needed to fix in my church.  I began changing their lives by letting them see how the Word is being applied right in their own eyes. 

To start changing your life, start changing other people’s lives. Don’t wait for other people to help you first. That won’t happen even for a hundred years. Do you know why? Not a lot of people wants to help other people because they wanted to get help first. 

A principle I learned from someone who started selling woods and cleaning shoes at the pier to selling planes once shared to me saying, “Do not let a day passes by without doing something good to others.” Look around you, there is always a need to be taken care of. Be it a widow who needed her own room or an orphan who needed food. A mom needs milk for her baby or a sick person needed medicines. Somehow I believe that why sometimes God would not always heal the person no matter how we prayed it is simply because God wants us to act in kindness. A pastor visited his member in the hospital offered some prayers of which the patient interrupted him and suggested saying “Pastor, you’re the 42nd person who visited me and all they’ve offered is only prayer. My bills is 42,000 ($1,000) peso up to this day.” Looks like every time or everyday when someone visited him it adds a thousand peso to his bill. Well, not true as hospital rooms here started from 1,500-3,000 a day. It’s like staying in a hotel. The more you stay the more you pay. But what if every time we visited a sick needy brother or sister in the Lord let’s bring something to contribute? Prayer is good but they need cash. 

Christianity is very good at providing ‘spiritual blessings’ such as prayers and bible studies etc. But very bad at sharing ‘material blessings.’ 

It’s 2:29 in the morning as I wrote this short, what, encouragement or correction? My wife and I just came back from seeing a friend who just lost his father in a lung cancer. Yesterday, 8 hours ago, we did something good, we sent $90 to a mother who needs it. And just as we got back now someone handed me $100 Canadian. Our money is ours only to give away. Until you give it away it is never yours. 

Love isn’t love until you give it away. 

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