Friday, June 20, 2008

To Give or Not to Give?

"He who gives to the poor will lack nothing, but he who closes his eyes to them receives many curses." Proverbs 28:27

This is difficult for me. I'm very gullible, and in today's world, there are many who ask for help that do not truly need it. How do I discern the truly needy from those who spend their lives trying to bum off of others? Last night we were at a church softball game, watching my son play ball, when a large teenage boy came walking up to my husband. He gave him a sad story about how they barely had enough gas in their car to make it to the convenience store near the ball field, and no money with them because his granny had left her money at home. I could not look at the boy as he talked to my husband, but I certainly listened. My husband is pretty discerning, and quite good at putting people off. He told the boy to go get his granny and bring her over to talk to him. In a few minutes the boy came back, not with granny, but with his Daddy (whom I noticed right away was a boy who went to high school with me, and was arrested in class when the drug dogs came sniffing around our classrooms). Red flag! The Daddy gave the same sad story. My husband asked what church they went to, and since there were many members of that church at the field, why he didn't go ask one of them for the money. The guy hummed and hawed around and finally left. The rest of the evening, we watched as that teenage boy worked the crowd, asking for money. Anyway, when the game was over, we saw one of the members of the guy's church and talked with him about it. The member told us that he had given the boy's Daddy some money. We pulled out of the park shortly behind the boy and his Daddy. When we drove past the convenience store, there they were...but not buying gas. They were buying scratch-off lottery tickets!! What a bunch of bums! I wonder what Jesus would have done.

I have no problem giving to people who are truly needy, but that type of begging makes me furious!

Father, I thank You for this day and for the blessings of life. I thank You for a discerning husband. I pray, Father, that You would give me discernment to know those who truly are in need. Thank You, Lord. Amen and amen.

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