Providing the Lord's Way, Christian Service

Poverty Is Real

Poverty is real. It is seen throughout the world in many different ways. Poverty can be seen most visually in terms of material goods. We can readily see those who lack food, raiment, and shelter by the outward appearance of the individual. But poverty goes much deeper than the outward signs. Many suffer from poverty of the soul. These individuals are not as easily recognized, for their outward appearance may not signify their impoverished state. Their poverty is still real.

In our quest as a society to relieve those who suffer these plights, we turn to many different plans for support. In the United States we have many organizations to help provide for those who need assistance. Some of these programs work very well, some not so well. How can we know the best way to help those who may need it? We can do this by providing in the Lord’s way. Some may say, I am not religious, or I am not Christian. To you I implore, simply see the plan for yourself and see if it is worthy of trial.

Providing The Lord's Way

What is the Lord’s way of providing for all? It really is so simple and so perfect. It embodies both principles of self-reliance and charity. These two principles when woven together embrace welfare, meaning the temporal and spiritual well being of every individual. The Lord’s way of providing benefits the giver as well as the receiver.

Providing The Lord's Way

In The Good Samaritan both the giver and the receiver is blessed.
In The Good Samaritan both the giver and the receiver is blessed.

The Giver and the Receiver is Blessed

“Providing for the poor and needy in the Lord’s way means that the giver helps those who are less fortunate by giving according to what he has received from God. He gives freely and with a true spirit of love, recognizing that his Heavenly Father is the source of all his blessings and that he is responsible to use those blessings in the service of others.

The receiver accepts the offered help with gratitude. He uses it to release himself from the bondage and limitations of his need and become more able to rise to his full potential, both temporally and spiritually. He then reaches out to help others.

Providing in the Lord’s way humbles the rich, exalts the poor, and sanctifies both. Both are blessed as they keep the Lord’s commandments. Both become more able to give as Christ gives.”

The Gospel of Jesus Christ in Action

This is Jesus Christ’s gospel in action, the crowning principle of a Christian life. The Lord said, “And remember in all things the poor and the needy, the sick and the afflicted, for he that doeth not these things, the same is not my disciple.” If we truly desire to be a disciple of Christ, we should give of ourselves, our time, talents, and resources, to care for those in need. We are better able to fulfill this responsibility if we are striving to become self-reliant, for we cannot give what we do not have.

Self Reliance is part of His plan.

Our God has blessed us with everything. He has given us all our resources and material goods and has given us stewardship over them. We will be accountable to Him for how we use what he has provided us with. He never forsakes us, but he does not do for us what we can do for ourselves. He has commanded us to use the things we receive from Him to take care of ourselves and our families, and then with the excess take care of others. When we do so, we become self reliant.

To become self reliant we must prepare ourselves in the following areas:

  • Education- When we have knowledge and wisdom, we are able to discern truth from error and make better choices. We are better able to understand God, and our fellowmen, and we have a deeper love for both of them with that understanding.

  • Health- We have been taught by God to take care of our bodies and minds and to keep them healthy and clean. When we do this we are better able to take care of our own needs and thereby serve others as well.
  • Employment- Suitable employment also gives us opportunities to improve our talents and develop the divine attributes within us. We are commanded to work and provide for the needs of ourselves and our families.
  • Home Storage- Providing an ample supply of food, clothing and fuel in case of emergency situations is a must in the volatile economic conditions that are present in today’s economic market.
  • Resource Management- We should be wise stewards by exercising judgment in managing and replenishing the resources with which we have been blessed. The council to “avoid debt”, and “live within your means” is priceless. The “buy now, pay later” mentality is how we get in to trouble in the first place.
  • Social, Emotional, and Spiritual Strength- We should strive to live righteously, to develop good relationships with family members and others, and to feel good about ourselves.

Work For What We Need

A wise man, Marion G. Romney stated, “Let us work for what we need. Let us be self-reliant and independent. Salvation can be obtained on no other principle. Salvation is an individual matter, and we must work out our own salvation, in temporal as well as in spiritual things.”

We All Need Help Now And Then

There will be times in our lives when we will not be able to meet our needs without the help of others. In these circumstances, we should turn first to our families for help, and then to other organizations if necessary. We should determine that we will use the help we receive to become more self-reliant and more able to give to others.

We cannot be self-reliant without being willing to work. Work is physical, mental, or spiritual effort. Work is the source of happiness, self-esteem, and prosperity. It is the way we accomplish good things in our lives.

Self Reliance Leads To Charity

When we are self-reliant, we can then give to help others. This is how we are able to live by the second principle in the Lord’s plan, that of charity.

Nearly all of us can give or do something for others, no matter how little we may have. When we strive to give and serve as Christ did, we are abundantly blessed. We overcome selfishness and greed, and we temper our appetites and passions. There are many ways to give, there are opportunities present all around us, in our homes, neighborhoods, and in our communities, if we are willing to see them. Once we see those opportunities we simply must be moved to act, a good intention is simply not enough.

The real long term objective of providing for each other in the Lord’s way is the building of character in each other, both the givers and the receivers. It is about rescuing all that is finest down deep inside of us and bringing to flower the fruitage of the latent richness which is divinely in us all.

Providing The Lord's Way Is Beautiful

Spencer W. Kimball stated, “Isn’t the plan beautiful? When viewed in this light, we can see that welfare is not a program, but the essence of the gospel. It is the gospel in action. It is the crowning principle of a Christian Life.”

I believe that the only way we will be able to remove poverty from our earth is to do it the Lord's way. When we figure that out for our stubborn selves, the problem will be solved.

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Comments 29 comments

RGraf profile image

RGraf 8 years ago from Wisconsin

Great words. Wish all could take to heart and act upon.


In The Doghouse profile image

In The Doghouse 8 years ago from California Author

RGaf,

Thank you. I believe if we did act upon what we have been taught we would have a much easier time in this world. I love how both the giver and receiver are edified by this plan.


Write On! profile image

Write On! 8 years ago from United States

Wonderful contribution Doghouse:-)

Write On!


In The Doghouse profile image

In The Doghouse 8 years ago from California Author

Write ON,

Thank you for your kind words.


PenmanZee profile image

PenmanZee 8 years ago

Wow Doghse, this is a keeper! especially in these convoluted times when some who have much shamelessly continue to take even more (AIG bosses) and drive the lowly further into the ground. Thank you for reminding me that even in need, i can strive for self sufficiency as you listed, which leads to charity. Wonderful hub.


solarshingles profile image

solarshingles 8 years ago from london

Diana, what a wonderful hub dedicated to Blog Action Day! There are still billions of people who are really poor and have absolutely no hope of being able to live as humans and to get at least basic education, nutrition, and health care. There is so much out there to do, to act and to accomplish...


In The Doghouse profile image

In The Doghouse 8 years ago from California Author

Penman,

Hello my friend. It is a terrible mess we have gotten ourselves into isn't it? If we could just live by these simple principles that have been given to us we would be in so much better shape. I believe that those who have been given much will have much to be accountable for when their stewardship report is required. It seems that the huge crisis of economic irresponsibility is more than we, the little guy can bear. It is for this reason I chose to focus on what we can do. We all can try a little bit harder to become self reliant, and then work to help others. In this small way, I believe we can make a difference in the world. Thank you for your kind words as always.


In The Doghouse profile image

In The Doghouse 8 years ago from California Author

Ervin,

Thank you for your comment on my small attempt to participate in Blog Action Day. Your statement of fact, that there are many who still are in abject poverty is true. There is much to be done as a society as a whole to improve the conditions in the world. I am aware of the poverty that is being dealt with on a global level and it brings tears to my eyes to see the starving children with no hope for improvement. I do know that the best way to start solving the problem is one person at a time. I think that by following the plan of becoming self reliant, and acting with charity towards other once you do, is the basic plan of survival we all need to implement. I know that it sounds as if I am a dreamer, but to quote a famous singer, "but I'm not the only one!" The only way to combat greed and excess is to have a change of heart, and my friend that is a real miracle that is seen in many.


;) 8 years ago

"For behold, are we not all beggars? Do we not all depend upon the same Being, even God, for all the substance which we have, for both food and raiment, and for gold, and for silver, and for all the riches which we have of every kind?"

Great Hub!


TLC Grandparent profile image

TLC Grandparent 8 years ago from Maryland, USA

Diana, Thank you for help educating us about this important subject. Jesus truly was an example to all of us of how we can help others in need. There is something each of us can do, even if it is small - like the Widow's mite. I was inspired by you and all the other 12,000 + bloggers, that i had to contribute my voice as well.


In The Doghouse profile image

In The Doghouse 8 years ago from California Author

:)

Yes, we are all beggars really. Thank you for that additional scriptural support. I love it!


In The Doghouse profile image

In The Doghouse 8 years ago from California Author

TLC Grandparent,

Blog Action Day was a wonderful way to all come together and blog about the important issue of poverty which effects us all in one way or another. Thank you for making your voice heard.


stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 8 years ago from Bend, Oregon

Very excellent article for Blog Action Day! The best thing we can do to help with our attitudes and fears with the current economic situation is to help those in greater need than ourselves. A big thumbs up!


In The Doghouse profile image

In The Doghouse 8 years ago from California Author

steph,

I couldn't agree more with your statements. If we make sure we are self reliant, we can then be in that position to help others. The best way to forget about your own troubles is when you concentrate on someone else. Thanks.


funride profile image

funride 8 years ago from Portugal

Great hub, very thoughtful. If we think about all of those who have hunger not only today (World Food Day http://hubpages.com/food/International-Food-Day ) but everyday then we must do something about it and try to help them. One thing I know for sure - there are always problems bigger than our´s!


Rob Jundt profile image

Rob Jundt 8 years ago from Midwest USA

ITD: This is a wonderful call to charity.

In God's perfect plan, the world will sustain us all. But as we know, the world is not as God intended it to be.

I thank you for your clarion call to self-reliance, charity, and giving up of self to help others.

There is a lot of wisdom packed in your words.

Blessings,

RJ


ripplemaker profile image

ripplemaker 8 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

What a beautiful and wonderful hub Diana! There is so much truth in what you say. Tonight I am especially struck again with the words that the giver and the receiver is blessed. That to follow Jesus is to never stop on growing and improving the self for then we can give more to others. Thank you for this moment when I can pause and reflect the things in my life. :)


In The Doghouse profile image

In The Doghouse 8 years ago from California Author

funride,

World hunger is a major problem and needs the attention of every self reliant person, to now apply the act of charity to help out others. I am not sure what it takes to really have someone feel that desire to be charitable, but as a Christian I believe it comes with practice and ultimately is received as a gift from God. There are certainly many situations in which we can practice charity. I guess the answer is simply in doing.


In The Doghouse profile image

In The Doghouse 8 years ago from California Author

Hi Rob!

The world, although created in perfection is not currently in that state, you are right. It will take each of us individually to strive for that perfection we lack for this process of restitution to take place. Individually as we learn to become more responsible as human beings, practicing self reliance and charity, we will then see a difference in our-self first, and secondly in others. This is the part of that charge to attain "perfection" the Lord issued. We have the gift of charity to help us become.

It was nice to hear from you! Thanks for the visit!


In The Doghouse profile image

In The Doghouse 8 years ago from California Author

Hi Michelle,

It is so good to hear from you, it seems like a long time! Thank you for your kind words about the Hub. I loved the topic that was given for Blog Action Day of Poverty. It is truly something that affects us all in one way or another. I totally agree that the process shown to us by Jesus Christ was one of progression. That individual progression ultimately is not only for our benefit but for the benefit of others as well. When we individually become more self reliant, we naturally are more inclined to apply the principles of charity in our life, if we listen to that divine side that is inherent in all of us. Putting off the selfish tendencies of man and reflecting on the Godlike qualities we are all subject to we can change the world, starting with ourselves.

Have a wonderful day Michelle!


cgull8m profile image

cgull8m 8 years ago from North Carolina

Great Hub, I participate in Kiva.org, they are excellent service, it feels great to help others, we also gain in various ways thanks to God.


In The Doghouse profile image

In The Doghouse 8 years ago from California Author

cgull8m,

"When we are in the service of our fellow beings we are in the service of our God." Helping others is a great way to give thanks for the many blessings we have personally been given. I am not aware of Kiva.org, so I will check that organization out, thanks.


MormonSoprano profile image

MormonSoprano 8 years ago from Utah, U.S.A.

I loved the movie. It was very touching. What is important is not only the willingness of us to serve, but the willingness to accept serivce and then to give in return. We may not all be able to feed the world, or solve all of the problems this earth suffers from - however we can do what we can. One person at a time. One good deed, or kind word, or smile, or charitable offering. We each have hands to serve and hearts to care. I hope that we can choose each day to do something to make the world a little better than it was before.


ripplemaker profile image

ripplemaker 8 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

Hi Diana,

I know it has been a looong time. :) But I am glad to have read your hub. Yes, I agree if we are able to let our divine selves (that is inherent in all of us) shine and come out many times, wow, wouldn't that be wonderful? Keep sharing your light as Jesus continues to do so time and time again! :)

Thanks and may you have a great day too!

Warm regards,

Michelle


In The Doghouse profile image

In The Doghouse 8 years ago from California Author

MormonSoprano,

I loved the video also. I thought it was a perfect choice to illustrate both the principles of self reliance, and charity. You are right, we can not do everything but we can do something. It only takes one small act from many people to add up to many acts for change. Thanks for your insights and comments.


Paraglider profile image

Paraglider 8 years ago from Kyle, Scotland

All this is fine, but what about those of us who acknowledge no god? Is it OK if we continue to help the less fortunate?


In The Doghouse profile image

In The Doghouse 8 years ago from California Author

Paraglider my friend,

Quoting from the Hub itself, "Some may say, I am not religious, or I am not Christian. To you I implore, simply see the plan for yourself and see if it is worthy of trial."

Whether you are a believer in God or not, the principles of becoming self reliant so that you can practice charity just makes perfect sense, don't you think? This plan of action is simply one in which you make sure you are in a position to help others, and then do it.

Even though you and I may differ in opinions on whose "plan" it is, does not make the plan any less viable. Helping others for any reason to me is simply divine.


Onusonus profile image

Onusonus 8 years ago from washington

To say moderately, if you have no charity you are nothing, therefore cleave to charity which is greatest of all and is the pure love of Christ. Wink!!


m dogg 7 years ago

kewlio

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