“Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you.” Luke 6:30-31
A few months ago our ministry was able to give a refurbished bike to Tim. He doesn’t own a car so his bike is the way he can get around the city. He’s enjoyed the bike immensely. He was able to find another bike he could use, so he brought the first bike back to me. He wanted to give it to someone else who needs it. In addition, he made a contribution to our ministry to help us with the cost of meals. I was deeply touched by his kindness and generosity.
Tim doesn’t have much money and he lives very meagerly. Yet he understands the value of giving to others as Jesus taught us. If there is one way to show kindness it has to be in giving. Jesus calls us all to open up our wallets and give to those in need. It doesn’t matter whether we are rich or poor, we are able to give.
Giving to others is one of the greatest joys we can experience. Jesus teaches that we need to be open-handed to all. His commandment to “give to everyone who asks you” is not given to us as a suggestion. It marks the way of Christ, who never turned anyone away who asked for his help. His commandment is founded on what we know as “The Golden Rule,” in which we are to “Do to others as we would have them do to you.”
We need to be more like Christ in giving to others. We are called to open-handed, willingly, and freely giving. Tim modeled this way of freely giving. Because Tim was so willingly wanting to bring back his bike to me, he enabled me to give it to a very needy young man. And then give a donation for others to have meals.
Sanchez has been coming to CCDC these past weeks. He is from Haiti and has been able to find work here in the city. He has a long bus ride and an additional half-hour walk to get to the job site. I knew he needed a bike. He lit up when I told him I had a bike for him and when I showed him what the bike looked like, he couldn’t believe his eyes how nice it was.
When Jesus teaches us about giving to others, he is not trying to force something on us that deprives us of something or robs us of our wellbeing. It is the opposite! Jesus is teaching us how in being open-handed we have true meaning and fulfillment in our lives. I am so thankful for the ministry of CCDC and the way it enables all who volunteer the opportunity to give to others. Our giving hopefully spreads as an incentive for others to give, just as Tim felt led to give his bike up to someone else who needed it.
Come be a part of our ministry to give to others. Help support with your giving of time and money to enable us to give to those who need our help in the Near Eastside community.
May God’s Peace be with you,
Pastor Jim and Debby Riley