How much is owed to you? I’m not talking monetarily. How much is owed to you from this world? Openhands4

Too many people these days feel entitled without doing anything. You’ve got those on government assistance year after year. Squatters who take up residence in other peoples houses without paying. Employees who believe they’re owed a raise just for showing up for work every day, whether they do the work they were hired to do or not. People in the media who have absolutely no talent, except for getting their pictures taken. And don’t get me started on human traffickers and drug dealers who believe they are entitled to harm others just to make a buck.

Let me set the record straight. The world owes you NOTHING. You owe the world. And you owe God.

You owe the world to be the best you that you can be. That means not harming others by hurting them physically, emotionally, or financially. 2 Thessalonians 3:12 says, Now such persons we command and encourage in the Lord Jesus Christ to do their work quietly and to earn their own living.  This doesn’t mean to earn a living just to get off welfare. It also means to earn a living without shouting to the world how great you are. We have quite a few politicians who need to live by this creed.

Owes usAnd you owe God to spread the word about Jesus and to help those less fortunate. It’s nice to have a giant mega church with large parking garages and sub churches, but how many of those members go out in the world to help others? I often wonder how many actually help the poorer members of their own congregation. Quite frankly, if churches did their job, there wouldn’t need to be government assistance.

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Don’t go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was here first. – Mark Twain
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Too many Christians will write a check for people hurt in an earthquake across the ocean quicker than give five dollars to a homeless guy walking by. Some of that is because too many claim to be destitute when they’re not. However, if you don’t want to give cash, buy them food or keep five dollars in fast food certificates to hand out. Have a child with no father in your neighborhood? Be a mentor. Give them your attention instead of someone in the media. A lot of people living in nursing homes would love a visitor, even from a stranger.

It’s time we stopped holding our hands open for unearned gifts and instead hold our hands open to give, whether it be of our time, our talents, or our money. The more we give instead of take, the better the world will become.

If you or someone you know are in need of prayer this week, please let us know. We’d be more than happy to pray for you.

And if this post moved you in some way, please feel free to share it.

Love is defined as an affection for another. But what about love for ourselves? Galations 5:14 states, For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” If we cannotcutting love ourselves, how can we love others?

The less we love ourselves, the more we have a tendency to focus on what we consider our shortcomings, which in turn keeps us from focusing on others. How do you tell if you or another does not love themselves? One way is by their actions. Do they overeat, drink or do drugs? It’s easy to tell if you can see it. But what if the self-hate isn’t so evident?

Maybe your hatred is inward. Self hatred consists of things like shame, guilt, and self-loathing. It keeps us from feeling we are worthy of God’s love.

We feel shame for something we’ve done or that someone has done to us. Abuse, whether it be sexual, emotional, or physical leads to large amounts of shame. Guilt walks hand in hand with shame. And all of it leads to self-loathing.

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“If you had a person in your life treating you the way you treat yourself, you would have gotten rid of them a long time ago…” – Cheri Huber, author

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We need to learn to love the person in the mirror as much as we are to love others. That means asking for forgiveness for not just our enemies, but ourselves as well. Your heart might be saying you’re forgiven by the Lord, but your mind continues to say He doesn’t love you. When that is happening, it’s usually not because God hasn’t forgiven you, but you haven’t forgiven yourself.

 

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Self-hate is usually a sign that our forgiveness needs to come from within. You must look at that person in the mirror and forgive them for whatever is keeping you from feeling loved.

If you are living with self-loathing, you must tell yourself daily you are loved. Need help? Every day for the next month, stand in front of the mirror first thing in the morning. Say “I love you. You are forgiven not just by God, but by me as well.” Eventually you will discover freedom from shame and guilt to the point you actually believe those words and can move on to enjoy a joyful life in the Lord.

And the more we learn to love ourselves, as long as it’s not egotistical, the more we can love others.

If you or someone you know are in need of prayer this week, please let us know. We’d be more than happy to pray for you.

And if this post moved you in some way, please feel free to share it.

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