READ: James 2: 14-17


ďAt his gate laid a beggar named Lazarus covered with sores and longing

to eat what fell from the rich manís table. ÖĒ Luke 16: 20-21† (NIV)


††††††††† We who live in middle class communities, seldom directly confront the extremes of poverty and although we are aware that it exists, we attempt to minister to needs through a variety of charitable agencies.† Periodically we become directly involved through Thanksgiving baskets or presents for children at Christmas; but we mainly view the specter of poverty through telescopic lenses.


††††††††† Satisfied that we are doing what we can our vision often becomes blinded to the spiritual and emotional poverty that exists within our gates. Although we may not often see those who are literally hungry, those who are hungry in other ways are already within our gates.† There are those in need of a kind word or a friendly smile, those nursing a nagging hurt, those who are lonely or bereaved, those who are starved for human companionship -- the list is endless.† The needy surround us daily!!


††††††††† We, who have been blessed by His grace and are spiritually and emotionally rich, let us not withhold His love from the needy both at and within our gates.† Have you seen Lazarus lately?††