My babies are sleeping next to me, and I can’t stop myself from reading story after story, explanation after explanation — Syria, ISIS, refugees, stampedes. I snuggled in deeper and I lift up a heartfelt thank you, God. Thank you that I was born who I am and where I am.
But before I can fall asleep, I remember a picture I once saw.
It was a little African girl who had next to nothing—nothing to eat, no pillow to rest her head on, nothing. Her clothes were tattered, and there was no toy box to be found.
And yet, she was filled with uncontainable joy!
She was dancing and praising God. She knew her Savior loved her, and though her belly ached and her earthly future seemed dim, she danced with the knowledge that someday she would see her rescuer face to face.
I want that kind of joy.
Too Much Privilege?
Maybe the poor are better off. Not by worldly standards, of course. But when we are so full of comfort items that we don’t need our Comforter, I think we’ve missed the point.
Obviously, I don’t want to be fleeing for my life with my family in tow. I can’t imagine the fear and the pain of those mommas and daddas making hard choices for their families.
And yet, I know from experience that God has been the realest, the most present to me when I am at my darkest. When I have nothing to hold onto but hope, God is all I ever want.
And then there are those days, like today, where I don’t “have” to find comfort and rest in God. I have my iPhone to entertain me. Delicious food, a warm bed, comfy couches and pajamas. My family is healthy. I’ve begun to make amends in broken relationships. I don’t need God to fix my earthly life.
- Because I’m crabby with my kids and husband.
- I’m impatient about our move.
- I feel restless in this in-between of living with my parents.
- I’m worried about my skills as a mother and a wife.
- I can’t stop looking to other people for validation.
I’m grateful for my privilege, but am I willing to give it up to know Jesus more? Are all of these comforts truly blessings or are they crutches that keep me focused on the world?
I’m not sure I want to know the answer to that question, but I do know that there are little souls looking up to me to see how I’m going to use all of the provisions I do have.
Will I use them to love others well? or glorify myself?
For I was hungry and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you took care of Me; I was in prison and you visited Me. – Matthew 25:35-36
That little girl may know Jesus more than I ever will—this side of heaven—but if it’s in my power to fill her stomach, maybe I will know Him more, too.
What will you do with your privilege?
These are all questions you must ask yourself—wrestle with and find peace with. And if you come to the same conclusion that I have—that it’s our privilege, our blessing, to give away our abundance—here are some ideas to get you started.
4 Ways to Use Your Passions to Love Others Well – You have been gifted something. As a part of the Body of Christ, you have something to give. Use it to love.
10 Simple (yet awesome) Ways to Love Others this Fall – There are so many people in your community that could use some extra kindness. If it’s within your power to give it, why not?
If you are wanting to help with the refugee crisis, but you have no idea where to begin, The Art of Simple has an awesome post on all the great ways you can get involved.
There aren’t a lack of organizations to get involved with. I’m sure you know a few that are dear to your own heart. And can I gently, yet firmly, appeal to you to get involved?
Make it a priority in your family to do something with your privilege. Something other than gain more abundance. Speak up, share, give, invite in. Whatever it is, do in love.
Go love well.
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