This time (as there has been many times I've given the homeless money) I actually looked at him, gave him some money, asked him his name then gave him a hug. I don't know if he was telling the truth or lying but for the first time in my life something was different.
I felt the power of God's unconditional love for someone else and I was able to give without expecting anything back in return.
We live in a culture that always wants something back.
And I'm beginning to realize this way of thinking has creep into our Christian culture as well. We don't want to give money to anyone who asks unless we think we may get something back. We tell ourselves it's because we want them to do something good with what we give them. We worked hard for that money, why give it to someone who may misuse it?
This way of thinking is idolatry and money is the idol.
This is not what Jesus taught.
Jesus taught us to give without ever wanting anything in return...anything.
He is teaching us to love others this way...
Because He loves us all this way. This is freedom.
We don't have to pay Jesus back, He gave His life for free.
I pray you open up your heart to the words of Jesus. Some may think they are crazy words, but they are actually words of Life.
"Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back.
Do to others as you would have them do to you.
If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them.
And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that.
And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full.
But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked.
Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful."