Last night was bible study night at church. We’re studying the book of James, and last nights section was 2:14-26. One section that stood out to me was
15Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. 16If one of you says to him, “Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it? 17In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.
At first, this section seamed ludicrous to me. I mean, whose going to tell someone in genuine need, “Man you look pretty bad. Go someplace and take care of yourself.” But how often do I say something to someone when I don’t want to give an action to back up my words? It reminds me of when some guys from another faith [I can’t remember which one] came to our house and asked if they could talk with my dad. The men also asked if they could help with anything, and since dad was in the middle of doing some gluing [and the men knew that was what he was doing when they asked] he told the men that they could help with that. However, the men refused to help because they might get his hands dirty. Are we willing to get our hands dirty to help others? The thought of seeing someone in need and telling him “I hope better times come to you soon” seams ludicrous to me, but the more I look at my life I wonder, Am I Willing To Get My Hands Dirty To Help Others?
Now I know that in our section of the world there are lots of scammers pretending to be in need so that they don’t have to work. That’s not what this James or I are talking about. If we see someone who we know has a real need, are we willing to take time to help them?