Archive for Greed

Anger and Bitterness part 5- Suffering in the World

A lot of people are bitter with God because of the suffering in the world. “How could a loving God be so cruel?” They might say. They have good reason to wonder. But I feel many people are misguided in the conclusions they come to.

It doesn’t mean God is a horrible father- but you only understand my point of view when you begin to understand why people suffer in the world in the first place.

Well, some countries really prosper, while others struggle. In some countries, like in my country, the US, people have jobs (for the most part), have nice houses, cars, money, and they can live the life they want (again, for the most part). If someone wants to go to school, they can go to school. We don’t worry about racism and prejudices nearly as much as we used to, we have a government that listens to the voice of people, and tries to treat everyone fairly.

In other countries, children starve to death, families suffer from diseases, don’t have homes, and embrace absolute poverty. There is danger all around, and people really don’t know what to do.

This is where some people get angry, hating God because of the suffering. Well, as sinful creatures, we are naturally selfish. We want what is best for us, even if it costs others. It’s not that we don’t actually want to help, but more so the fact that we get so wrapped up in our own busy lives, we forget to notice how much we already have, and how little others have.

As Christians, God gives us the awesome responsibility to reach the world. In a world that can often lack sympathy and love, we are supposed to share sympathy and love. We are called to shine brighter than the world, and draw people in with our integrity and our genuine care for the well-beings of others. This is so they will look at God and see the love in him. What we do and how we live reflects on God. Yes, we are supposed to speak God’s word, but we are also actively supposed to live out those truths: giving to the poor, helping those in need, offering a heart to someone who is feeling empty, offer a shoulder to cry on, offer hope to someone with no hope or joy.

Ultimately, it is our job as Christians to take on the hurt in the world. Yes, that is a huge responsibility, but we can start off small, just by merely paying more attention to others, being kinder, etc. And then we start to do more and more for the Lord.

My point, people, is this. When people want to act like God is the blame for everything, when they want to act like he is unloving and uncaring- this is all a big fat lie! God is a father, and we are all his children. A father can’t stand when there child is lost or suffering, so as a father, he loves us very, very much, and cares for our needs. The problems is that his people are slacking off, and not doing their job completely. God changes the world through his people, and if his people are too greedy and selfish to care for others, it will look as though God is heartless. We have to be very careful what we do, because like I said, what we do reflects on God, and we really, really don’t want to give others the wrong impression.

We can get rid of the bitterness in some people’s hearts and give them more faith in God if we live the lives we are supposed to live. As the quote goes, we have to be the change we want to see in the world. So be the change! Be the hope! Be the love! There is so much anger and bitterness we can erase.

Valentine’s Day Love

My friend Kayla and I did something very special for valentine’s Day. We bought all different kinds of flowers and a bunch of vases. We had about 41 vases, and decorated each vase with a curly ribbon. Then we put 3 flowers in each vase. We went to a nursing home and handed them out to the people there. There were only about 30 old people, and then workers. So we handed them out to the elderly. It was so incredible, watching their faces light up, and listening to them talk about how pretty the flowers were and how it made them feel happy and special.

The flowers were expensive, and no one told us to do it, we just decided to on our own. We had also made Valentine’s cards- Kayle made about 12 and I made 8 and sent them to people at Hospice. We put things in them like “someone cares, stay strong, Jesus loves you.” We also gave them the rest of the flowers we had left. There were 16 people living in Hospice, so we had plenty. 🙂

We weren’t allowed to go into the rooms to hand them out like we did at the nursing home because of the rules, but the lady at the front desk told us she would certainly hand them out for us. We wanted people to feel special, feel loved, know we care, that Jesus cares. If there were more Christians who could be selfless and love other people like Jesus loves, this world would be a better place. There would be less broken hearts, less pain, more people falling in love with Christ and the freedom and redemption and hope he offers.

A big problem is that there are lots of greedy Christians who are focused on themselves, and only care about what God has to offer them. That prevents God’s love from reaching people, the people who truly need his love most: the down-trodden, the weak, those left behind.

This is a reason Christ is so grounded in humility and so strongly desires to see it in us. It’s because being humble and selfless allows us to stop obsessing about ourselves and all the things we ‘need’ and don’t have, and allows us to take care of people who truly have need. Christ did not say “No, I’m not going to die for anyone, I want to live my life and be happy”; he did not refuse to die for us. He humbly accepted his fate, even though it meant he would suffer. He put someone else above his self.

“When you do things, do not let selfishness or pride be your guide. Instead, be humble and give more honor to others than to yourselves. Do not be interested only in your own life, but be interested in the lives of others.” Philippians 2:3-4

“Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be your slave— just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” Matthew 20:26-29

Jesus was perfect, deserved everything, and he was not self-centered. He placed other people above himself, event though it caused him pain. That’s because we needed him desperately. We are supposed to be like him, put others before ourselves, because others need us- and Christ through us- desperately.

I don’t want people walking around thinking Christians are hypocrites and liars, and that they try to act good but they are actually heartless. I want them to feel love and compassion and hope, I want them to see how headstrong we are in changing the world. That is who we are meant to be. But we have to be Christlike in the way we live, doing for others before we do for ourselves. That is how the world may know him, through us. This is the truth they were meant to see.

*Poetry Corner- “Ego”, greed

Ego

If there’s not time today
There will never be time

How come we’re the richest
Acting like we’re poorest?
Our egos are the biggest
And the sorest

Won’t open up our wallets
Because we are afraid
Having EVERYTHING is not enough
To make a change

How come we’re the richest
Acting like we’re poorest?
Our egos are the biggest
And the sorest

And the acidic greed inside our hearts
Burns away at our souls
Devouring everything it sees, it feeds
Until all that’s left are holes

Some people have what’s very small
Some have nothing at all
Very few are filthy rich like us
Have EVERYTHING and not enough
People suffer
And we wanna see change
But we ourselves are the problem
Standing in the way!

Making the world feel small
We have to have it all
And the bigger we are
The harder we fall
Why is the world
Callous and unfair?
‘Cause we don’t see greed in the mirror
But that doesn’t mean it isn’t there

If times are hard today,
They will never be easy
If there’s no money today
There will never be enough money

Can’t set broken hearts free
Starving and empty
While our endless greed
Only feeds and feeds
Can’t look them in the eyes
And see all their pain
If we keep living only for us
Then there will never be change

How come we’re the richest
Acting like w’re poorest?
Our egos are the biggest
And the sorest

-Jennifer Clayton
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I get so frustrated with countries like America. It’s not just us, but we definitely are super guilty of this. We hit hard times, like when the economy is going crazy and we’re afraid we will lose our jobs and houses and everything. But even at our worse, we are so much better off than other countries. Billions of people around the world live off less than $2 a day. And we are upset? I guarantee those people would take living in our difficult economy any day over living the way they live. At our worse, we are living better than most of the world. Our worse is better than their best.

Perry Noble once said that “only in America can you be obese and poor at the same time.” And he’s so right! People act like they broke, but they still have means of getting the things they need. I recognize that even when times are hard here, it doesn’t change the fact that we are born with silver spoons in our mouths. Perry also was talking about how we have storage houses for our cars. People in other countries could live with their whole family in one of our car garages. We have houses and then houses for our cars.

Only in America will we complain about how hard times are getting, and then you still see all these commercials about getting your dogs the best food and grooming them and treating them like they are just like people. It’s like, “yeah, these are hard times, but we still somehow have money for this stuff” It’s ridiculous! We’re struggling but we can take care of ourselves and our pets… when people in others places don’t have anything to feed their families, and they wouldn’t even think about pets!

We get so blinded by how much stuff we have. The poem is saying that we have big and sore egos. They are big because we constantly want more and more stuff, and sore because we sit and complain about everything we don’t have, even though we have everything. “If there’s no money today, there will never be enough money” means that if we have so much stuff, but still can’t find it in our hearts to give, because we feel that we don’t have enough, then we will never find it in our hearts to give.

There won’t be enough for everyone if we only want more. There will only ever be enough for everyone if we realize that we do have everything, and others desperately need our help and our generosity, so that they can survive, too.

This is why we need humility. Why Christ calls us to be humble and to give to the poor.

“But God gives us even more grace, as the Scripture says, ‘God is against the proud, but he gives grace to the humble.'” James 4:6

“Jesus answered, ‘If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.’” Matthew 19:21

Humility and serving others gets rid of our blindness, pushes away our greed. And this is what we need. Loving people like this by giving and serving shows the world that Christ is real, because acts such as these truly show how he loves. When we are greedy, nobody can see Christ in us. People think we are liars and fake. Don’t put on an act. Get out there and do your job, show genuine love, and I guarantee people will change, and ultimately the world will change.