Sun, 17 June 2018
In August of 2016 a terrible flood hit the greater Baton Rouge area. The financial impact was catastrophic. Thousands of homes and businesses were flooded and lives were lost.
The people of the United States, through their elected officials, stepped forward to help meet the need. According to reports, approximately 1.3 billion dollars were granted to Louisiana for restoration efforts. Nell and I are grateful recipients of some of that money. I know that many of you have been too.
Would anyone care to venture how much of that amount has actually been distributed to needy families? Approximately $60 million. That may sound like a lot (and it is); however, relative to the amount allotted. It is a small percentage. It is a little less than 5%! In fact, more money has been spent on administration of the program than has actually been given to those who suffered losses in the floods (see attached jpg).
For those who’ve suffered in the flood, you might want to say to the agency , “That money was given to you so that it might be channeled through you to the hurting! Please pass it on!”
We instinctively know that it is not right to hoard resources that have been entrusted to us that were intended to bless others.
But before we get embittered at governmental ineptitude, could it be that we too have been guilty of keeping the blessings of God that have been entrusted to us to ourselves? Instead of being rivers of blessings, we’ve become reservoirs of God’s bounty. Instead of being channels of blessings, we’ve siphoned off inordinate amounts for ourselves.
Songs of the Summer
“Blessed to Be a Blessing”
May God be gracious to us and bless us and make his face to shine upon us (67:1).
For that your way may be known on earth, your saving power among all nations (67:2).
Let the peoples praise you, O God; let all the peoples praise you (67:3).
This morning God will challenge us to lives of greater generosity from Psalm 67 in a message I’m entitling, “Blessed to Be a Blessing.”