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10/3/18 1:11 P

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These are two very good blogs from Pastor David Gould.
09/29/18 GREAT DISTRESS AFTER THE HURRICANE MESS

Don't forget, there is still great distress as well as great beauty.
Untold numbers are homeless, sick, bereaved, wiped out, destitute, jobless, broken, hopeless, separated from loved ones.
Countless elderly people and families have no where to live and no one to help them.
People are without food, water, medical treatment, shelter, clothing.

The aftermath can be even greater than the initial losses.
IT AIN'T OVER BY ANY STRETCH.
PRAY AND GIVE TO THOSE IN NEED.


09/29/18 A VIEW OF GOD'S SUPPORT SYSTEM

Churches reach out to disaster victims, especially to those in the family of faith.
Be family before you are a victim.

A VIEW OF GOD'S SUPPORT SYSTEM

God sets up mutual and ready care for those who have chosen to be part of His family of faith, the local church.
Gal 6:10 As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.

I don't know the numbers of times I have met people, the numbers of people that have come to me or approach-ed me on the street, claiming to be in need. I am not a disaster relief center, but of course I do what I can and what I believe God would have me do. Sometimes I cannot provide the help, for which they are asking. And, in fact, I don't feel compelled to give to everyone who asks, since I know that often times there are people who get churches and Christians to give them finances, only to use those hard earned dollars to gratify carnal desire or support their laziness or poor stewardship.

I usually ask the person who comes to me, "Where do you go to church?" I ask this because that is the church that ought to be taking care of them. If they give me the name of a church (whether locally or on the other side of the country) I ask them if they have already told their pastor. When they tell me, NO, or they tell me they cannot get up with him, I offer to contact him myself and plead their case. That usually ends the conversation. They are usually lying about having a church, going to a church, being part of a church and usually lying about their needs. Whether they admit their deception or if they openly admit that they are not church people, I point out that if they were part of a local body of believers, then they might not be in the difficulty they are in at this time. I also point out that it is presumptuous to call on a church for help when they have been rejecting Jesus until they want financial help. If it is a need that I cannot minister to or a need that I don't feel my church is responsible to handle, I tell them that I cannot and I offer to help them get assistance from another source (governmental, social or religious). Usually they don't want that kind of help, because they are looking for an easy mark.

But now, let's come back to actual disaster relief. Some of these same principles apply in this situation. God does give the church compassion and God does expect believers to care for the truly needy. But God expects and provides for local churches to care for their own, first of all. It is as simple as that. No one should be part of a church, as a safety net for disaster. We ought to be part of a local body of believers because we recognize our need and our responsibility. Churches have a special responsibility for fellow believers. This is God's plan for assistance and support. God did not design the church to be a welfare station for those who resist His salvation.

I know this is not going to fly with some people. I am sorry that you don't understand. But God requires His people (pastors and parishioners) to provide for themselves when they can, to be good stewards of the benefits God provides for them and to address spiritual needs and problems above all other needs.

Yes, we do works of mercy. Yes, we do social ministries. But we are not a welfare organization and we are not called or obligated to serve the demands of people who reject the mercy and love of God. In fact, God often uses the difficulties in a person's life to reach them and save them.

To the glory of God and the credit due to the Christian groups, which do such great and meaningful work through disaster relief, there are multitudes that are helped, who might otherwise not be helped. I am glad for this and encourage churches to get involved in this ministry. HOWEVER, my point is that people should trust God for salvation and then they will see the plan of God to provide for them in time of trouble. God is King and Savior, He is not a welfare provider. I think about how much less suffering people would go through, even in times of disaster, if they were already part of God's family of redemption and love.

God bless, Kim

There is nothing more important in your life than your relationship with Christ.

Something is wrong when focus is, "how sin does not separate us from God," rather than, "how God separates us from sin."

Live today with all you've got for Jesus. Never give in and Never give up.


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