In places like Uganda and Haiti, poor people work harder than most Americans do, and still they only make $2 a day. That is all they get. They can’t make it on that!
Meanwhile their governments hoard money and don’t provide services. In the US, we’re required to provide clean water for houses. Why? Because you have to have good drinking water to live. When you live somewhere where the government doesn’t have that standard and your water is contaminated, your community will die.
We can make things so much better for each other. We can end poverty. There are people working on this. They’re putting in wells. They’re running food distribution networks. They’re always thinking, “Hey, let’s figure out how to help. If people don’t have water, let’s figure out how to get them water. If they don’t have food, let’s figure out how to get them food.”
I wish churches would think that way. It’s not the first thing that comes to mind. You ask, “Where do you put most of your money?” And people say, “Well, we’re trying to do a church-building project.” I know sometimes you need it. But how often do churches do this because they really need it? Isn’t it better to ask, “Where is your focus as a church?”
Think about it. No one in your church is going to want to drink contaminated water, go without food, or make $2 a day. But that’s the daily reality for our neighbors in Uganda and Haiti, and other places in the developing world. So how do we love our neighbors as ourselves? By figuring out how to get clean water and food for them. We should be saying, “We’re trying to focus on where we are really needed in the world. That’s what we’re trying to do, because that’s what we’re supposed to do.” We’re supposed to love our neighbors as ourselves.
Last summer, my in-laws attended a conference at Bethel Church in Redding, CA. One of the speakers there said the heartbeat of God right now is justice.
This means the heartbeat of God is helping people get good drinking water. It’s rescuing people from the sex slave industry. It’s getting food to people. It’s creating microloans to help create jobs that help people get out of huts and into actual homes.
I’ve seen these movements outside the church. Now it’s becoming a movement in the church. I think it should be the thought process of every churchgoer, of anybody who is a follower of Jesus Christ.
We’ve had a blood transfusion with Jesus. And now, if our hearts beat as His heart beats, then we need to start thinking about justice.