I woke up this morning
Saw a world full of trouble now
Thought, how’d we ever get so far down
How’s it ever gonna turn around
So I turned my eyes to Heaven
I thought, “God, why don’t You do something?”
Well, I just couldn’t bear the thought of
People living in poverty
Children sold into slavery
The thought disgusted me
So, I shook my fist at Heaven
Said, “God, why don’t You do something?”
He said, “I did, I created you”
– Matthew West: Do Something
I heard these lyrics some time last week, and usually the first time I hear a song I just don’t pay that much attention to the words, but this song struck a cord.
How many times have Christians and non-Christians alike asked God, “Why don’t you do something?” Well, whether you’re a Christian or not, why don’t you (and I) do something?
I don’t have time.
I don’t have the money.
Someone else will do it.
The person I’m thinking about helping might ask for more than I am comfortable doing.
I’m sorry folks, but these are all sorry excuses. For all of us, me included. I don’t claim or pretend to be any better than anyone else. I’m just tired of listening to my own excuses, and more often than not, I find that if there’s a thought running around in my brain, I’m not the only person thinking it. That means that my excuses are probably some of the same ones you’ve been using.
No time? Well, maybe you have a little extra cash. Give up your vice one day a week. Instead of pulling through the drive-through at your favorite coffee spot, get up a few extra minutes early and make coffee at home. Use the $2-$5 you would have spent on your caffeine fix to stop by the dollar store and pick up a few personal hygiene items to send to the local homeless shelter.
No money? Drop by that local homeless shelter, or the crisis pregnancy center and offer to lend a hand. There’s always work to be done and too few hands to do it.
Thinking someone else is already helping? How do you know? Maybe they’re not because they think you’re doing it. Even if they are already doing something, don’t you think they may need a helping hand or a well-deserved break?
Oh, here’s the biggie: the person in need may ask more than I am comfortable with. It’s okay to draw the line at enabling. I’m all about teaching a man to fish as opposed to giving him a fish. Give the immediate need, if you can. Just don’t turn your back completely.
Please don’t think I’m being “preachy” or judgmental. I’m talking to myself just as much as anyone else. I’ve offered up every one of these excuses and probably half a dozen others as to why I “can’t” do something. And that’s exactly what they are. Excuses.
So the next time you’re tempted to shake your fist at God and ask why He won’t do something, open your fist and use the hand He gave you.
“Jesus never wants the ‘haves’ and the ‘have not’s’ so far apart that they can’t see each other.” -Max Lucado
“The generous themselves will be blessed, for they share their food with the poor.” Proverbs 12:9
” Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share.” 1 Timothy 6:5
“But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed. Although they cannot repay you, you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous” (Jesus) – Luke 14:13-14