The baggage of only looking after Number One.
v 42 Give to those who ask, and don’t turn away from those who want to borrow.
Pleasing oneself – or always looking after Number One – is the very essence of sin. It is a very significant lump of baggage in the experience of most of us. From the basic ‘Gimme’ of a young child right through the ages to the desperate pleading of the more mature, ‘I want’ is planted deep in our thinking. It means that we turn away from the needs of others in order to get another …. whatever for ourselves. Our vision becomes very restricted.
I am aware that in our day and age our letter boxes regularly get stuffed with appeals for money, and so our consciences develop an immunity to the plight of others. Isn’t it hard to know what to do in the face of overwhelming needs in the world around us! Maybe we ourselves are feeling the pressure of the cost of living and the large hike in the cost of gas, electricity and petrol.
But whatever your needs right now, Jesus urges us all to see the bigger picture of need in the world around. Clearly you can’t respond to every appeal that comes your way, so some thoughtful, prayerful discernment is needed. Maybe you can only help with the education of one child in a developing country, or with one relief agency offering help in a flood or drought crisis, and then lump all the other appeals in the recycle bin.
Focus your giving and prayer on some specific area – don’t just turn a blind eye and think no further than Number One.