Week Five – Day 2
TODAY’S FAST – Fast from All Junk Foods, Desserts, Sweets, and Sodas
Read James 5:13-20.
There are several places in Scripture that give a warning to the rich. Of course, our reflex is to say, “I’m not rich.” “Rich” is a matter of perspective though. A recent study by Oxfam, an anti-poverty charity, showed that 85 people own roughly half of the world’s wealth. Compared to them you may not be rich. But consider a different standard. Do you have more than what you need for daily life? Do you have leisure time or hobbies? Do you have a retirement account? Most people in our world do not. There is a place for saving and preparing for the future, but to neglect the poor and downcast while we store up for our future is warned against in Scripture. We can do one without neglecting the other. What we consider to be normal life, much of the world would consider to be luxury and self-indulgence. By comparison, we are the wealthy elite simply because we are able to eat daily, drive cars, and live in homes with electricity and plumbing. Are these things wrong? Only if we neglect those who are caught in a cycle of poverty that they cannot break themselves. You may not be able to help everyone, but you can help someone. Who will you help? Are all the treasures you are storing up for your own future comfort and ease, or are you also storing up eternal treasures?
Father, help me to see the many ways in which you have designed your church body to help me. Also, help me to devote myself to the church so that I might also pray for those who need it, encourage those who need it, and rejoice with those who need it. Help me to see how the church is a gift, essential to my well-being, holiness, and daily life, and not simply another organization among many. I pray in Jesus’ name, Amen.
“And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.”
James 5:15-16 NIV