Today, let’s discuss a bit about religion according to the will of God. When it all boils down, if we are not pleasing God/walking according to His standards then we are wasting time and deceiving ourselves.
Consider the following true stories that are really not uncommon today.
These are four accounts among many that are all too common nowadays, and it is wrong!
Jesus, Mary and John
In his last moments on earth, and with dying breathe Jesus showed love, compassion and concern for his mother. He took the time to give her [widow] care into the hands of John [the Church]. (John 19:26-27)
Why didn’t he charge his brothers with the task? Where were they? Mary is there, having to watch her firstborn die a tremendously cruel and horrific death. Her husband is already gone, and NOT ONE of her children is there with her, not even one daughter! I cannot imagine leaving my mom to face such a thing without me with her.
So, Jesus gives his mama’s care to “the church,” and John did not hesitate to take her into his own home (John 19:27b).
As I have watched the lack of care and concern for my own mom since our dad’s passing, the above account gives me a bit of comfort somehow. Even the siblings of Christ did not stand by their mother’s side at such a difficult time. And Scripture does not say they contributed one mite to assist John with her care. Perhaps they did, but The Bible does not credit them with doing so. Even in the Bible days, widowed mothers were neglected souls. Human beings don’t learn and grow as much as we’d like to think we do.
The treatment of widows today, in numerous cases, is atrocious. Forgotten by their families AND the church. Used for what their children can get out of them and kicked to the curb when the answer is “No.” Too many wealthy are neglected in nursing homes, with only lawyers to see to their needs; they may get token visits, as such visitors are just investing in the future of their bank account. Those who are not wealthy often don’t even get token visits because there’s nothing materially in it for those could be visitors.
This happens to much. I have heard the accounts and even witnessed similar in my own family. Yet, we SAY we love them. To that I say, “HOGWASH!”
We had better lay our hearts before The Master and really unload its blackness. Cry out to the Lord in repentance, stay there until we truly receive a new heart. Because many of us aren’t going where God is because we remain black hearted buzzards who have only been cloaked in pseudo-religion.
There are numerous verses of Scripture pertaining to the proper care and honor of widows. It is not by coincidence that instruction on this was given so many times. I can look at God’s people today, and see reason for it! It also tells me that God is serious when it comes to how His widows are treated and cared for.
Does your church actually cultivate the love of God or does it cultivate living life from the playbook of the world’s self-help gurus and ruthless business commandments? Does it cultivate Christ-likeness, or does it cultivate pride, arrogance, and selfishness with a lack of love and compassion?
These are very important questions.You cannot do what pleases God, take care of who is important to God, without Love! Click To Tweet
The Lord gave his widowed, hurting mother to John [the Church]. He didn’t say find my brothers and tell them to take care of her. He didn’t say take her to my sister’s house around the corner. No, Jesus entrusted her to John. To me that’s very telling in regards to the subject of our discussion today.
Though widows with adult children should be well honored and cared for, because of the hard hearts of human beings that will not always be the case. The Lord’s church should be there to honor, love and care for them; they should not abandon them as many do today.
The Bible tells us that in this time the love of many will grow cold (Matt 24:12). That was supposed to be a sign of what would be going on in the world. The sad thing is that much of the church now follows the world, and her love has also grown cold.
What would the Lord say to us about how we care for our own parents? The lack of care and concern for our widows at home and church? Honestly, what do you think He would say? Would He be pleased? Would He be disappointed? Angry?
In churches that focus more on this world than what’s important to God…real love, compassion and concern for others is often tangibly lacking. You find those who have a hard view towards those less fortunate. They take a haughty attitude towards others, lack compassion and understanding for the plight of others etc… Some have such hubris as to brag about the cost of their latest ensemble, right in the face of one they see every week whose clothing is threadbare (1 John 3:17-19).
On the other hand, some churches may not be heavy into material things, but they can be just as self-centered; some family churches are like this. Their focus and concern are really for their own. They can quickly forget their non-blood family congregants.I know, human beings are not perfect. For those who profess to be followers of Christ, however, there is even greater need to put your actions where your mouth is, so to speak. Click To Tweet
Do not tell me you love your parents if you are so busy you don’t even think to pick up a phone and call for weeks on end, months even! Don’t tell me you love your widowed parent if all you come around for is to sponge off of them, and when their money is gone so are you! If this is how we do then we only prove ourselves shameless liars.
Don’t tell me you have religion as defined in Scripture when you haven’t a thimble’s worth of care and concern for the widows and orphans in your family and church.
Since my dad’s passing, I have just stood back and watched. I had hoped some things would change amongst certain people, you know, that they would be shocked into reality. Didn’t happen. They fell right back into their typical pattern, and I was not surprised.
I was somewhat surprised and disappointed, however, by my mom’s church. Their neglect was a true wow moment for me. I was actually quite hurt for my mom. In my opinion, there is absolutely no excuse for their utter neglect of her.
I have since learned that about a year after their husband’s passing, many widows leave the church they attended with him. One reason for that is there is no help to make the transition. One widow explained that they felt out of place. The sad thing is that there was no one willing to help her feel like she still had a place at the church. It is disgraceful indifference, and it should not be in the church.I have come to realize that people throw words around like leaves in the wind; however, they often mean absolutely nothing. They are but idol words that individuals will answer for one day real soon (Matt 12:36) Click To Tweet
I have talked to a few people who have no parents left on this earth. Some of them lost their parents between a couple months to 2 years of each other. Talk to these individuals about time and busy-ness! Some wish they had made time. Some wish they had an opportunity to set aside misunderstandings; you know, all the coulda, shoulda, wouldas. Others, who did what they could, don’t have these types of regrets. They just missed the parents they loved and cared for. For them, it would be nice to have another day to sit and talk with them, but they are thankful they have the memories forged with their parents instead of memories of opportunities missed due to their own pride and neglect.
Talk is indeed cheap, and many of us will find out that all the smack we talk ain’t worth a hill of beans when we stand before God. We say we want to hear God say well done, good and faithful servant, yet we pick and choose what ways we don’t mind being like Him and what instructions we will obey. We will use His principles to obtain the “important things” of this world, while forgetting that in God’s eyes LOVE is even greater than faith! (1 Cor 13:13) We want what’s in God’s hands, we want what the world deems great; therefore, we walk as nominal, superficial Christians.
This world is the dressing up room, as the old song says. It’s training ground! God is not going to ask us about our bank accounts, our accumulation of material wealth and societal status. If we refuse to learn how to truly love here, especially those of our own families and the body of Christ, we will not be welcomed into the Kingdom of God.
So, I implore you,make what’s important to God what’s most important to you! Click To Tweet
Until next time,