This Warm Up Winter we’re challenged to not just give our cast-offs, but to give our best. By Roger Wood
I don’t believe that God wants us to live feeling guilty for the material things and the many blessings that He has given us. His challenge to us in Micah 6: 8 is to do what is right, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with our God. In order to do this we need to see that everything we have belongs to Him. We therefore hold it in trust to be used for building the Kingdom.
A friend of mine recently told me of how the Lord had been working in her life as well as in her husband’s. When visiting one of their parents, they noticed someone begging from door to door. Not wanting to give money, they still felt that the person had a need. Remembering that they had a bag of apples in the car, she suggested to her husband that they give some to him. Parking the car she went into the house and he went to give the apples. On returning to the house she noticed that he was no longer wearing his jersey. “What happened to your jersey?” she inquired. “Well, I felt that the Lord wanted me to give it to the man. He looked so cold,” he replied. “I pleaded with God. I told Him it was my favourite jersey. But He simply replied – ‘So what? Are you going to let him stay cold just because it’s your favourite jersey?'”
So often when it comes to giving items for Warm up Winter, we’re willing to give of our surplus or the clothes that no longer fit us, or the items that we don’t want anymore. But sometimes God is going to prompt us to give of our best. Whether we do or not will depend on how we see the things we possess, and the people to whom we are giving.
So what should we be giving?
In a previous article, I mentioned the people living under the subway in Rondebosh. The one thing that touched me was the shoes neatly placed together by their make shift bed. They were placed just as I placed my slippers at the end of every day. People in need are made in the image of God, and in giving we need to respect that.
Caroline Powell, of The Warehouse says, “Some people think that those who have nothing can do with anything as long as it will keep them warm. But I believe that God’s heart for people is that those who have nothing, actually deserve the very best.”
With Warm Up Winter we are wanting to bless people through the items we give. In order to do this we need to ask ourselves the following questions:
- Is it clean?
- Is it in good condition?
- Would I be willing to give this item to my best friend?
What can I do with damaged clothes?
If you can restore the item (by fixing or mending it) so that it does not look tattered and worn, then feel free to give it. But if it is beyond fixing, and is something that you would no longer wear yourself, then rather find a different use for it. We strongly believe that no one (no matter what their situation) deserves to be given something that is damaged and unusable as this erodes dignity.
This blog post is part of our Warm Up Winter blog series. Read our previous WUW posts here.