Sharing and Caring in the Modern Church
“The whole congregation of believers was united as one—one heart, one mind! They didn’t even claim ownership of their own possessions. No one said, “That’s mine; you can’t have it.” They shared everything.” (Acts 4:32)
How exactly are we supposed to behave in today’s church when it comes to sharing and caring for each other? If we look at the earlier church, we see where everyone looked out for each other. Widows and orphans were taken care of, nobody was hungry and there was genuine caring and sharing.
“If you have two coats, give one away,” he said. “Do the same with your food.” Luke 3:11
Fast forward to today and many Churches seem to have lost that sense of sharing and caring. It is so easy for those in need to get lost in many congregations, especially in a mega Church. The same thing can also happen in smaller Churches if we do not put proper plans and policies in place. Many Churches are not doing a good job in making sure that at least the basic needs are met for members who are in need.
Many members are struggling to make ends meet, while too many leaders are driving around in fine style. Now before anyone starts stoning me, I am not against leaders having nice things BUT this must be balanced. I am not saying leaders are not to have the best; however, if that best is to the detriment of any member then we need to go back to the drawing board.
“Dear friends, do you think you’ll get anywhere in this if you learn all the right words but never do anything? Does merely talking about faith indicate that a person really has it? For instance, you come upon an old friend dressed in rags and half-starved and say, “Good morning, friend! Be clothed in Christ! Be filled with the Holy Spirit!” and walk off without providing so much as a coat or a cup of soup—where does that get you? Isn’t it obvious that God-talk without God-acts is outrageous nonsense?” (James 2: 14-17)
I strongly believe that we are to take care of our members before we go jet setting around the world. We are a family, and if there is one single mother who is about to be evicted while the leader has ten cars then God cannot be pleased. If there is a widow whose electricity is about to be disconnected and nothing is done then we are sadly missing the point. Now I am not talking about those persons who are simply trying to milk the system, I am talking about those with genuine needs that we know about as a congregation. Also we might not be able to help all the time, but at the very least the lines should be open.
This is our duty as ministers; as leaders. Nobody should be lacking the bare necessities in our congregation. As long as we are in a position to help, we should try our best to do so.
So YES anyone is free to have ten cars, mansions and jets, BUT might I suggest that we also make sure that a single mother is not about to lose her job because her old car has breathed its last breath. Every member in our congregation should be important (not just the ones who give the big bucks). Someone should be in charge of this arm of the church to make sure every member is being served. This might mean having more than one person depending on the size of the church, but it is too important not to have.
I salute all churches that have a handle on this…great will be your reward in heaven!
Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Enter, you who are blessed by my Father! Take what’s coming to you in this kingdom. It’s been ready for you since the world’s foundation. And here’s why:
I was hungry and you fed me,
I was thirsty and you gave me a drink,
I was homeless and you gave me a room,
I was shivering and you gave me clothes,
I was sick and you stopped to visit,
I was in prison and you came to me.’ (Matthew 25: 34 – 36)