What a Loser (Psalm 146:7-9)



We all know them and have worked with at least one person that the world would label as a loser.  The world labels them this way for many reasons.  Some get this label because of their looks.  Others because of their lack of intellect get called loser.  Others who don’t seem to fit in with the norm are cast out as losers.  If we are honest with ourselves, we may have viewed some people that way.  The bad news is, we may be viewed that way by some select group of people.  With all that said, a very important question needs to be asked.  What does God think?

Which executeth judgment for the oppressed: which giveth food to the hungry. The Lord looseth the prisoners: The Lord openeth the eyes of the blind: the Lord raiseth them that are bowed down: the Lord loveth the righteous: The Lord preserveth the strangers; he relieveth the fatherless and widow: but the way of the wicked he turneth upside down. (Psalms 146:7-9)

God is for the oppressed, the hungry, the blind, the depressed, strangers, the fatherless and widows.  In fact, you could label God as “The God of the Losers”.  Stop and think about it.  Isn’t that what you were when Christ found you?  When you cried out to Jesus for salvation, you were poor in spirit recognizing that you had nothing to offer God, your life was a mess and unless he would reach down from heaven and do a miracle, your life would be totally lost.  It was at that point that God came into your life and changed it forever.  What made it happen was a very simple formula: loser + God = fantastic salvation and a wonderful life.

Our society–many Christians included–has cast off the “losers” of this world.  They are so stuck on themselves and their agenda and could care less about the “loser” people who are hurting.  We need to make a difference and reach out to the cast aways.  We must demonstrate God’s love so that they can believe in God’s love.  Only then can they recognize that the Savior Jesus wants and accepts all that will come to him: especially those the world sees as losers.

So that servant came, and shewed his lord these things. Then the master of the house being angry said to his servant, Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in hither the poor, and the maimed, and the halt, and the blind. (Luke 14:21)

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How Can I Help (Psalm 142:3)



The Psalmist had a distorted view of God.  Even though God was his source of hope and trust, he believed that his way was only revealed to God after he became overwhelmed.  

When my spirit was overwhelmed within me, then thou knewest my path. In the way wherein I walked have they privily laid a snare for me. (Psalms 142:3)

What his words failed to reveal is the belief that God knows the end from the beginning.  Before God created the heavens and the earth, he knew each step that the psalmist would take in his life and for every situation.  What can we do to help people like him?

The psalmist was overwhelmed because of the circumstance that surrounded him.  From his word, we can learn what a believer experiences and what we can do to help him.

There are six key words or phrases in this passage which are important for understand what he is experiencing and how to provide help.

Know – to scrutinize

Cared – to seek or ask, make inquest

Refuge – way to flee

Portion – inheritance

Brought very low – bring down, pull down push down

Prison – shutting up, fastener

The psalmist was stating that he was overwhelmed because nobody scrutinized the situations in his life.  They did not ask or seek about his condition nor did they provide a way of escape.  He felt alone, pushed down and shut up in that place.

What can we do?  We can observe people and ask the Lord to reveal to us the trials and difficulties that they are facing.  We can overcome our fears and reach out to them by speaking to them and asking questions directed at their needs.  When we understand what they are facing and how they feel, we can point them to God, who is their refuge and strengthen them in the understanding their right to claim God and his provision of refuge as their own.  Pray together with them and then continue on your own in your private prayers.

Do I Really Care? (2 Timothy 1:4)

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If we knew how others viewed us, how many would say that we are self centered or all we think about is ourselves? The number may surprise us. In defense, we may point out the many times that we have reached out with aid to others. We may speak of how we support others in need or simply how we act kindly towards others. The question is, “Is that enough?”

Is it enough to perform actions of kindness and charity? I think not. Actions can be just that: simply actions. We can perform acts of kindness without the true motive for our actions being known. Guilt, fear of rejection and pride can each be a motivation for kind acts and if they are, the works performed will not be acts of kindness.

In his letter to Timothy, the Apostle Paul best describes this virtue. Greatly desiring to see thee, being mindful of thy tears, that I may be filled with joy; (2 Timothy 1:4). True kindness occurs as a result of empathy. Paul describes this emotion as “being mindful of thy tears”. The word mindful comes from two words meaning “to stay” and “to chew”. We are mindful about something when we continue to roll the idea over in our minds. For those being kind, they are rolling over in their minds the hurts and pains of others which causes them tears.

They may continually think of their friend’s hurt from losing a loved one. They focus on the pain and sickness of others and carry those burdens with them. When friends are absent from church or just out of touch, they wonder how they are doing and if they are abounding through their circumstances. These are the thoughts of a person who cares.

So let me ask you, do you really care about others? To find out, let your thoughts be your judge.

Giving Support (Philippians 2:1)

Remember a great event in your life? Did you keep it a secret or did you run out and share it with somebody? Everything from trips to funny events move us to share them with friends, colleagues and family. Why do we do this? As personal beings, we attach ourselves to others and gain enjoyment, strength, compassion and understanding from those individuals. This is part of God’s design for man. God intends for people in relationships to provide strength and support for others in that relationship. The scriptures share abilities that friends can have towards others.

If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels and mercies, (Philippians 2:1)

Consolation is much needed today. A great way to receive it is from another person. The word for compassion comes from two root words meaning “near” and “to call”. The action of calling a person near to you is so that they can gain needed strength from the support you offer.

Imagine a child falling down and scraping his knee. His mother calls him to herself and then embraces him in her arms. The pain sensors in his leg continue to work just as before, but the drawing near to his mother helps alleviate the pain. This type of aid is also true for emotional pain as well. I remember when my wife lost her father. She maintained her composure quite well until the graveside. After the trumpet played taps and a flag was presented to the family, she broke down. When she was unable to stand and emotionally distraught, I reached out to her and held her closely. The drawing near and providing support brought the strength that she needed.

This is what is needed in the church today. There are many people who are hurting and falling. Instead of reaching out to these individuals and attempting to draw near to them, the church watches them falter. It seems that the only people getting support are those who are the active members of the church. What is sad is that those who do not have a fellowship bond with others in the church are left to stand on their own. It is no wonder that people fall away from God. Their falling may be due in part to them not having the intended support from others that God had planned.

Supporting people who struggle is not a glorious event. It can be very discouraging because those you care to help may still resist the help that God brings. But it is not about you and me or making us feel good. It is about helping the fallen. Look around in your life. Think of the people that you can draw near to and provide comfort. The next time you see them reach out and make a difference in their lives.

If you would like to read more of these thoughts in a hard copy format, my new book is now available at the link below.

https://www.createspace.com/4441566

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