Why do we make excuses when it comes to our money and our time? There always seems to be an excuse when it comes to a person begging for money. We don't know what they are really using the money for. They might not even need the money, who knows? We make excuses to justify why we shouldn't give someone our extra change or buy someone food. I don' t have time, I'm running late for work, I don't have any cash on me, ect. So do we just skip over ALL the verses in the Bible that refer to giving to the poor? It is simply stated in Mathew 5:42 "Give to those who ask..." Simple enough; just give. Don't worry about what they are going to buy or do with the money, you just give with a cheerful heart. When I get to heaven I don't want to stand before God, who is LOVE, and say, "Lord, when did I ever see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and not help you? And God say to me, "I assure you, when you refused to help the least of these you were REFUSING to help me." (Paraphrased from Mathew 25:44,45) I'm just as guilty as anyone because as many times as I have given, I've certainly passed up people or made excuses for why I shouldn't stop, why I shouldn't help them out, why I shouldn't take some time and just talk. But it isn't right and isn't what the Bible instructs us to do. We are supposed to LOVE and LOVE and LOVE others. How will anyone know the difference from a Christian and someone who is not? And if you don't want to give money well just like Peter and John you have something better. Acts 3:6 "...I don't have any money for you. But I'll give you what I do have. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, get up and walk." Giving isn't just money and time it is giving what God has given you. But compassion goes hand in hand; compassion is love in action. Sometimes it is very hard to live in an impoverished country because you see so much poverty, hurt, and violence that you heart gets hard because you truly can't help everyone. However, you can help those who God puts in your path. Today that happened and I crossed paths with two little boys begging for money. All the missionaries come together once a month for a meeting and after the meeting we all go out to eat for fellowship because we don't see each other that oftn. Today we went to Chili's and we were sitting out on the patio area at a outdoor mall type area. It is an extremely nice mall with a movie theatre and tons of restaurants. Just across the street are squatters. So two little boys came up and started asking people for some coins. Everyone in the patio area just kind of ignored them which is what you have to do many times. Unfortunately, when you do give money in countries that are below the poverty level you will get mobbed by others asking you for something. But all I saw were these two little boys, the same age kids that I work with, and I went over to the fence and I asked them what there names were and where they lived. They pointed to the slum area and I asked why they wanted the money and they said they wanted to buy some soup. I told them that I had a half of sandwich and some fries left over and I asked if they would want it? They smiled and eagerly shook their heads. So I wrapped up my food and Richie, who works in the same department as I do, grabbed some leftover food to give them as well. As we were giving them the food, one of the little boys turned to a table of Salvadorans and was asking them for some money and the waiter quickly realized what was going on and fussed at the kids and told them to leave. But the waiter, and those other Salvadorans saw an act of compassion. Hopefully, that will mark them. How unfortunate it would have been, a whole table of missionaries, just turn their backs to some children who just wanted some food or a few cents to go buy something. I leave you with these concluding words from Hebrews 13:1,2 "Continue to love each other with TRUE Christian LOVE. Don't forget to show hospitality to strangers, for some who have done this have entertained angels without realizing it."

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