Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.
Sometimes I get all caught up in not doing quite enough for Christ and His Kingdom. “What?”, you say, “you are a missionary and serve in another country.” Sure, I do, but like many living, breathing Christians, we listen to the subtle whispers of the enemy, and accept some of these whispers as truth.
This morning, I began my day in James, a familiar passage, as I had memorized some of it as a new believer. I guess back then(about 30 years ago) I wasn’t mature enough to take care of myself(in the throes of adolescence) to worry about caring for widows, orphans, or the helpless and hopeless. Yesterday was Anna’s 9th birthday. A little over nine years ago today, God whispered to us and led us to adopt one of his children-our Anna. Every waking moment we love her, encourage her, nurture her and raise her according to the way she is to go we are fulfilling such counsel.
This Tuesday I spent several hours getting a test done that would take less than 20 minutes in the States. Our single, sixty-something, house-helper(but she is more than that-our kids’ Tica abuelita (grandma)) needed a test that could be performed at the same clinic as she was unable to get an appointment with the free clinic for many months. Not only did she accompany me to this private clinic, but the time spent with her was sweet Christian fellowship. And no, she doesn’t speak English, at least not in my presence. Her gratitude in our obedience to providing for the test was evident, but being present in the hours with her did much more for my soul that I could ever imagine.
Listen for those whispers, act, and reap more than you’ve sown. Peterson says it even more beautifully in The Message-
Act on what you hear….but whoever catches a glimpse of the revealed counsel of God – even out of the corner of his eye, and sticks with it is no scatterbrain but a man or woman of action. That person will find delight and affirmation in the action…reach out to the homeless and loveless in their plight , and guard against corruption from the godless world. James 1:22-27 (The Message)