Do you live a luxurious life? If you live anywhere but a third world country, have a roof over your head, clothes on your back, food to eat and clean water to drink, then you live in luxury.
One definition of luxury includes nonessential items, any object that is desirable but not essential, and often expensive or hard to get. With that in mind, and the fact that 90% of the the people on earth are forced to live each day in poverty or despair far beyond anything most of us will ever experience, we truly are the lucky ones. Are we really?
Living a luxurious lifestyle dictates one must be able to afford the non essential items which define success in most civilized countries. A full time job, family, hobbies and leisure activities end up consuming one’s life to a point where there is little or no time for worshipping God, while a simple life where each day is spent in pursuit of true necessities reaps rewards beyond our wordly recognition.
Imagine the life of a African mother where each day begins by searching for food and fetching water for your children, or spending the entire day working at a linen factory earning less than a dollar.
Now, open your eyes and take a look around. Look at your life through the eyes of the Cambodian mother or father. Next, look at your surroundings through the eyes of Jesus. Everything that you have been blessed with is a tool- your job, your car, your family, your home, even the things we take for granted like the ability to walk and speak. Eventually the day will come when He asks the question: “What did you do with what you were given?”
How will you answer? “I spent my life trying to make enough money to pay the mortgage and save for retirement, while ignoring the needs of others.” Or, “I spent my life searching for food and water for my family, so we could survive.” Must there be such extremes? Through God there is a center point for which we must strive, where we serve God by helping the needy, allowing them to set time aside to be thankful to God for the gifts we are able to share.
“Then the King will say to those at his right hand, ‘Come, O blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see thee hungry and feed thee, or thirsty and give thee drink? And when did we see thee a stranger and welcome thee, or naked and clothe thee? And when did we see thee sick or in prison and visit thee?’ And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me.’ Then he will say to those at his left hand, ‘Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels; for I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not clothe me, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.’ Then they also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see thee hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to thee?’ Then he will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it not to one of the least of these, you did it not to me.’ And they will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.” (Matthew 25:34-46)
The Bible doesn’t merely suggest we help others, it commands it! This is not only our goal in life, it is our mission, being the fortunate ones. The message is clear: If you live in luxury, the first step in serving God is reaching out to those in need allowing God to work through you. Do this to honor your father in heaven and you will be rewarded accordingly.
We thank you for providing more than we need
And for the opportunities you place before us daily,
And ask you to inspire us to serve you through others
Who’s needs seem so out of reach.
We ask that you use us as your vessels
To complete any task you lay before us,
Knowing that it is our mission to continue Jesus’ work on earth.
Lord we thank you for continuing to look after us,
Our families, friends and those around us,
And ask you to answer the prayers of those in need
As they cry out to you.
God we love you and thank you for all that surrounds us!
This message was written by Daniel St.Pierre