Successful People Help the Poor
“Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy” (Proverbs 31:8-9 NIV).
If you want to live a successful life, the Bible offers some countercultural instruction.
Serve the poor!
How could serving the poor help us be successful?
The Bible gives us numerous reasons why this is so, but here are just a few of them:
-- It’ll make you happy. “If you want to be happy, be kind to the poor; it is a sin to despise anyone” (Proverbs 14:21 GNT).
-- You’ll honor God. “Whoever mistreats the poor insults their Maker, but whoever is kind to the needy honors God” (Proverbs 14:31 NCV).
-- It’ll make you a better leader. “Leadership gains authority and respect when the voiceless poor are treated fairly” (Proverbs 29:14 The Message).
I’ve seen this in my own life. Some of you know my story. When I wrote The Purpose Driven Life, the book became a huge global success. It’s been translated into 137 languages.
And when you write a book with the first line of “It’s not about you,” it’s pretty easy to realize that any money or influence that came from it wasn’t meant for me. So, among other decisions Kay and I made at the time, we started Acts of Mercy, a foundation to help the poor and the vulnerable suffering with AIDS.
The book’s success was not about me; it was all about God.
Proverbs 31:8-9 particularly spoke to me during this time: “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy” (NIV).
That’s what successful people do. They stand up for those who can’t stand up for themselves.
Talk It Over
-- Why do you think it’s so important that successful people help the poor and stand up for those who can’t stand up for themselves?
-- How have you seen successful people in your life help the poor and the defenseless?
-- What can you do to more faithfully help the poor?
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This devotional © 2017 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
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