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Helping Others

God has given each of us the ability to do certain things well.

So if God has given you the ability to prophesy,
then prophesy whenever you can-
as often as your faith is strong enough to receive a message from God.

If your gift is that of serving others, serve them well.

If you are a teacher, do a good job of teaching.

If you are a preacher, see to it that your sermons are strong and helpful.

If God has given you money, be generous in helping others with it.

If God has given you administrative ability and
put you in charge of the work of others,
take the responsibility seriously.

Those who offer comfort to the sorrowing
should do so with Christian cheer.

Don't just pretend that you love others: really love them.

Hate what is wrong.

Stand on the side of the good.

Love each other with brotherly affection and
take delight in honoring each other.

Never be lazy in your work, but serve the Lord enthusiastically.

Be glad for all God is planning for you.

Be patient in trouble, and prayerful always.

When God's children are in need,
you be the one to help them out.

And get into the habit of inviting guests home for dinner or,
if they need lodging, for the night.

If someone mistreats you because you are a Christian,
don't curse him; pray that God will bless him.

When others are happy, be happy with them.

If they are sad, share their sorrow.

Work happily together.

Don't try to act big.

Don't try to get into the good graces of important people,
but enjoy the company of ordinary folks.

And don't think you know it all!

Never pay back evil for evil.

Do things in such a way that everyone can see you are honest clear through.

Don't quarrel with anyone.

Be at peace with everyone, just as much as possible.

Dear friends, never avenge yourselves. Leave that to God, for He has said that He will repay those who deserve it. [Don't take the law into your own hands.]

Instead, feed your enemy if he is hungry.

If he is thirsty give him something to drink and you will be "heaping coals of fire on his head."

In other words, he will feel ashamed of himself for what he has done to you.

Don't let evil get the upper hand, but conquer evil by doing good. (Romans 12:6-21; TLB)

Helping others is something we must cultivate. That's what love, grace and mercy are all about. When we receive more of them from God, we become more loving, gracious and merciful to others.

A helpful person is a happy person. Whatever light and joy we bring to others will radiate back to us. God our Creator is our very present help in times of trouble. He helps us whenever we are in need.

But there are some things we must always remind ourselves in helping others.

  • We cannot help every single person on earth. There are always people beyond our physical reach and help. As mortal men and women, we are limited in our capacities and capabilities. Thus, let's not be discouraged because we cannot help them physically. However, we can always offer a prayer of love crying to the Father on their behalf. Let's not be engrossed with the people we can't help. Let's focus on those people we could help. Worrying about what we cannot do prevents us from doing those things we can.

  • Let's not let the bad examples discourage us. In this world that we live in, many people are not helping others. Thus, let's not let their lack of love and kindness influence us from loving and helping others! If other people aren't helping, we should! We should learn from good role models instead of those bad ones. Thank God that there are many people who love and help others.

  • Some people would refuse our help for reasons of pride, self-sufficiency, embarrassment and other valid reasons. They may be better if they receive our help. But their needs to be left on their own are stronger than their wishes to be helped by us. Some people might think that we are not able to help them. They might initially tell us not to bother them. Some really want our help but are uncomfortable about it. If so, we must understand their situations, and start building confidence and trust before proceeding further. We must put them at ease before helping them.

  • Never give up too soon in helping others. Helping others may take up a lot of time and efforts. The road to recovery and restoration is always filled with discouragements, distractions, distresses and despairs. It may take a little longer time than we have expected. Some need a one-time help, some need a short-term help and some need a long-term help. Whatever it is, let's do those we could do. Never, never give up in helping others. Sometimes we are helped as we help others! Sometimes what we receive in intangible ways are more than what we give in tangible means! The healer gets healed, the comforter is comforted, and the giver receives gifts from above!

  • Never complain when others keep asking us to help them. If they do, it is a great sign that we are in business, we are a great help, and we are approachable! However to prevent any abuse and misuse, we must exercise wisdom and discretion in helping others. Sometimes, we are not able to help them at the time of their request for help. Sometimes, what they ask is beyond our abilities and capabilities. Sometimes, what they ask is not the best solution. Thus, we have to pray and seek for a better and more creative way to help them.

  • Sometimes, deferments are necessary so that all things are done right at the right time in the right place to the right person and for the right reason. In everything we do, let's stay away from complaining and arguing so that no one can speak a word of blame against us. We are to live clean, innocent lives as children of God in a dark world full of people who are needy and helpless. Let's shine out among them like beacon lights, holding out to them the Word of Life.

  • Always remember that all people have different needs. If we don't need or use certain items, it doesn't mean that others don't need or use them. If we don't drink coffee, it doesn't mean that others should not have coffee. Never impose our own standards on others. Others have personal rights to have something they need or want. If we don't want to help, just say a polite "No." Never preach a fiery sermon in explaining why not.

  • Never let others manipulate us into doing things that we ought not to do. Sometimes, people might use feelings, shame, threats and hurting words to influence us in doing things for them. Sometimes, what they say might be true, half-true or totally untrue. Whatever it is, never be a slave of others! Never let others enslave us! The important thing is that we must always have the option to exercise our free choice to help them or not.

  • Never believe every story we hear. If some stories seem questionable, let's take time to check them out. Test every thing. Never be naive. Some people lie in order to receive help from others. But on the other hand, some unbelievable stories are true. We would rather err in helping someone who doesn't need it than not helping someone who does. Whatever we do, let's do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men. We will receive our rewards from Him.

  • Never say hurting words to others when we help them. Let's not make others feel bad by telling them how much we have to go through in order to help them. Let's not make them feel as if they owe us their all. Let's not embarrass others when we do something for them. Let's be careful not to say or do anything in the presence of other people that would cause distress and shame to the persons we are trying to help. Let's help others, hoping for nothing in return.

  • Never attempt too much in a short time. In helping others, let's be very patient and kind, never boastful or proud, never haughty or selfish or rude. Let's not demand our own ways. Let's not be irritable or insensitive. Let's not hold grudges even when others abuse or misuse us. Let's love others even when it costs us a lot! If we truly love others, we will help them no matter what the cost. We will always believe in them, always expect the best of them, and always stand our ground in defending and protecting them. And love never fails.

We must love and help others just as much as we love and take care of ourselves.

Written on:
29 November 2005