Consider the Poor

Psalm 41 begins with the words, “Happy are those who consider the poor; the Lord delivers them in the day of trouble.  The Lord protects them and keeps them alive; they are called happy in the land.”

Christians believe that we are beings who are made in the likeness of God.  1 John 4:8 declares that God is love.  Therefore, we can conclude that we are made to love and that our lives find their greatest fulfillment when we love as we were designed to do.  If love has to do with meeting the needs of others, then it makes absolute sense for Psalm 41:1 to remind us, “Happy are those who consider the poor.” 

Dr. Norman Vincent Peale once commented, “Do kindly things for people, for nothing can so completely erase gloom and create new vigor as the practice of caring and good will.”  Since caring brings both help to others and happiness to our own souls, we should give careful and frequent consideration to how we might contribute to the betterment of others. 

I appreciate an anonymous poem entitled “Thanks Be to God”:

            I do not thank Thee, Lord, that I have bread to eat while others starve;

            Nor yet for work to do while empty hands solicit heaven;

            Nor for a body strong while other bodies flatten beds of pain.

            No, not for these do I give thanks;

            But I am grateful, Lord, because my meager loaf I may divide;

            For that my busy hands may move to meet another’s need;

            Because my doubled strength I may expend to steady one who faints.

            Yes, for all these do I give thanks!

            For heart to share, desire to bear, and will to live,

            Flamed into one by deathless Love—

            Thanks be to God for this!  Unspeakable!  His Gift!

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