ADVERSITY VS OPPORTUNITY! Most Americans, particularly Christians, find it hard to admit they are experiencing difficulties, so often their friends never stand by them or help them because they do not know what their friends are going through. As Christians we need to be in tune with opportunities that God gives us to help others that are going through adversity especially those in the Body of Christ. “What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds?’ Can such faith save them? Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to them, ‘Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,’ but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it?’ In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead” (James 2:14-17 NIV).
Often we are so self-absorbed that we miss the “signs” of the other person’s needs until disaster strikes. As a Director of a missions organization I often see people in need in third world countries, though poor they are often very proud, and would never ask for assistance in any way though they would respond if assistance was offered. The same is true in America. As Christians we need to be aware of the needs of those around us, not just for food or clothing, but also emotionally, physically, and in many other areas of life.
I am thankful for those Christians who are reaching outside their own local “world” in America to get the big picture of helping others in distant parts of the world with the adversities these people face. I am thankful for those Christians who are helping our mission organization assist those in Caribbean countries with the gospel, food, clothing, housing, medical care and personal relationships. At the same time let me encourage those of us in America to open our eyes to those around us and observe their needs as well. You don’t have to be poor to be facing adversities in life. And pride often covers over adversity until disaster strikes. Let us step out of our own self-absorption and become more aware of those people in need around us and then let us act on that awareness. We and Jesus will be glad we did.