Monday, December 19, 2011

Taking Care of Business

Here’s an interesting thought from the very end of Deuteronomy 29 in The Message paraphrase:
“God, our God, will take care of the hidden things but the revealed things are our business.  It’s up to us and our children to attend to all the terms in this Revelation.”
What are the revealed things?  For the Israelites, it is the covenant given to them by God through Moses.  The “do’s and don’ts” of living, “right and wrong” of the moral code.  For Christians it is all of this and more.  It is loving the Lord with all of our heart, soul, mind and strength and loving our neighbors as ourselves.  Turning the other cheek.  Praying for your enemies.

Much easier said than done at times, isn’t it?  It becomes a little bit easier at this time of year to be kind, give to others and remember those less fortunate because Christmas is coming!  What happens when January rolls around though?  Are we able to maintain that loving, joyous spirit, or are we back to the old grind?  Joy can be fleeting sometimes.  What we need to remember is that feelings come and go and if we can still do the right thing, even in difficult circumstances, even when we don’t feel like it, God will honor that commitment!

God told Joshua to be strong and to take courage.  Why?  Because God was striding ahead of the Israelites as they crossed the river Jordan.  He wasn’t far off and away, he was there with them.  Joshua had faith and also commitment.  But you know some of the Israelites had to be thinking “are you kidding me???  Cross here, take these people on???”  We know the previous generation had doubts and didn’t always do the right thing.  Thus, they wandered the desert for 40 years!  Faced with the choice of wandering another 40 years or doing what was asked of them, they chose to go forward, even if they weren’t feeling one hundred percent confident!

The revealed things are our business!  If we know about something, if we see something, we are supposed to do the right thing.  I love the story about the individuals who went into a department store and paid off items on lay away so families could have them for Christmas.  All the individuals asked was that those who benefited find some way to “pay it forward.”

So here is a project for you to think about and start planning for after the holiday season.  Look around in your community.  See a need?  It could be an individual or some organization that could use some help.  Make it your business to take care of business!  Find a way to help them!  Make it a goal to continue helping someone in some way through out next year.

Need some ideas?  Your local food pantry might be one place to help out.  I know in our area they have not gotten as many donations in as they usually do, so Christmas is going to be a struggle for them.  Imagine what January will be like!  How about the local Domestic Violence shelter?  Is there a service you could provide?  Are there items that they are in need of?  Could you help out at the local animal shelter?  How about the local veterans group?  Could you drive someone to and from their appointments?  Could you help put together care packages to be sent to troops overseas?  How about visiting the elderly and those who are unable to get out of their homes?  Can you change a light bulb for them or make sure they have an ice free walkway or run errands for them?

There is so much out there that we can do, if we will just make it our business to take care of business!  God will take care of the rest if we will just deal with the things he has revealed.  And if we open our eyes and ears, we’ll see everything that he has already revealed!

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