We normally think about poverty as being caused by a lack of money. Yet it is quite possible to be rich in terms of money and yet incredibly poor in other areas. My passion is to see a world free from the effects of absolute poverty, a world which doesn’t have a billion people surviving on less than $1 a day. Yet I am very aware that defining poverty is not about numbers and statistics, but about a lack of resources in multiple areas such as capital, earning capacity, freedom, health, faith, education, love, family, companionship and community.
I remember, 20 or so years back visiting Nigeria and speaking to people we would certainly class as extremely poor. I must have appeared to be very rich to them. But there was one particular area where I was poor compared to many of them. I cannot go into details, but no sum of money could rectify one particular situation Christine and I were faced with.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.
(Matthew 5:6 NIV)
I have never known true physical hunger, but I am well aware that millions of children go to bed every night desperately hungry. My life has never been threatened by thirst, but I can well imagine that thirst becomes the overriding priority of a man crossing a desert.
What is this righteousness, that we should so desperately want to know it in our own lives?
What are the results of righteousness in our lives?
Do we need to defend our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ? Do we need to defend our moral standards? Does God need defending against those who don’t believe in him, or is God perfectly able to defend Himself?
We are called to let the Kingdom of God rule in our own lives and extend his Kingdom in the world around us until, “The earth shall be filled with the glory of God as the waters cover the sea”. In seeking to bring more of God’s kingdom in the society in which we live we are meant to put our faith into action and lead by example rather than seek to impose our moral standards on our fellow human beings.
To someone who does not believe in God, or to someone who is undecided, it would seem that believing in God is like taking a leap into the unknown – “the blind leap of faith“. People require proof. Without proof it may seem foolish to stake all on something without evidence. But is that really true that faith is a blind leap?
Can we, who have put our trust in God, prove to others that we are right?
Can we prove to ourselves that what we believe is true?
Does an atheist need faith to stake all on his belief that there is no God?
Is there more to human existence than what we can experience through our 5 senses?