LENDING TO GOD! That sounds foolish to even say it. After all God is the creator of the heavens and the earth. Everything in the universe belongs to God (Psalm 24:1). What do I have that I could even lend to God? After all God gives and God takes away and in doing so blessed is the name of the Lord (Job 1:21). As Christians we are stewards of God’s possessions not owners of them. Stewards have responsibilities not rights. But while occupying God’s world on this planet we interact with other human beings and God does notice how we treat other people and how we respond to people in need. God speaks to us in human terms about our treatment of and response to other people.
“Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will reward them for what they have done.” (Proverbs 19:17 NIV) An act of kindness on our part toward those who are poor and in need brings a response from God toward us. God sees what we do toward the poor in the world, and though most of us don’t do good things to receive anything in return, God has determined to reward us for our acts of kindness. Our kindness to the poor marks us out as lenders. A lender, by one definition, “is someone who grants the use of (something) on condition that it or its equivalent will be returned.” Now most of us would never look at ourselves as lenders to God and that God owes us something. But though God in reality owes us nothing (Psalm 24:1) He has determined to bless us for our kind actions toward the poor. And as Jesus said, “It is more blessed to give than receive.” (Acts 20:35) In the giving act alone our reward is often received at the same time we give. To see someone’s face when we share with people and see the blessing it brings to them, or the life it gives them, or the hunger it satisfies, or the clothes or shoes that bring relief is more reward than we should ever hope for.
There are poor people all around us in the United States. Some are homeless, others are hungry, some need medical care, some are abused, and others are abandoned. And in the countries where our mission organization works, in addition to the U.S., the same conditions are present only to a much larger degree. We are thankful for God’s people who sacrifice to be kind to the poor; orphans, widows, hungry children, sick adults & children, and people with many other problems. And as these people show kindness to the poor I have never ever heard one person say that they regretted doing so and all are blessed in their actions and sacrifice. God loves the poor (Psalm 72:12-14) and He wants us to love them also. In fact I believe He wants us to make it a priority in our lives. Will you lend to the Lord?