I John 3:17-18, “But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him? My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.”
These two verses dig down to the depths of my bottom line theology and challenge the fundamental truth of that theology, which is SOVEREINGTY. If I hold the conviction that God is sovereign and in charge of all things (material, spiritual, and emotional) and if He has blessed me with the “world’s goods” why would I withhold them from another in need? How/why would I “shut up” my heart? That type of withholding comes from selfishness, pride, and being my own master. Many times I have felt the judge and jury over whether another was in need because they squandered, were foolish, and in essence “didn’t deserve it.” Do I deserve the lavish gifts of God? “Behold what manner of love the Father has given unto us that we should be called the children of God.” (Also I John) This is the EXACT manner of love that should be overflowing out of my heart. Love given to the undeserving…esteem placed on the unworthy. If I can’t love in this way then I don’t fully understand God’s love for me. Love, this boundless love, is only truly shown in our actions and in the risk of truth. I have a long way to go in this department but I KNOW this is the key to so much living “as Christ” and I must allow God to have His way here in my heart in this area.