I am doing research for work and came across this blog entry from http://odomspeak.blogspot.com/ In light of the economy, our ever present race to take care of the poor and just my personal opinion about poverty, this rang loudly in my heart:
Read this letter that Hudson Taylor penned in a similar environment on a similar day, November 18, 1857:
"Many seem to think I am very poor. This is true enough in one sense, but I thank God it is “as poor, yet making many rich.” My God shall supply all my needs; to him be the glory. I would not, if I could, be otherwise than I am—entirely dependent myself upon the Lord, and used as a channel of help to others.
On Saturday we supplied, as usual, breakfast to the destitute poor, who came to the number of 70. Sometimes they do not reach 40, at other times exceeding 80. They come to us every day, Lord’s Day excepted, for then we cannot manage to attend to them and get through all our other duties, too.
Well, on that Saturday morning we paid all expenses, and provided ourselves for the morrow, after which we had not a single dollar left between us. How the Lord was going to provide for Monday we knew not; but over our mantelpiece hung two scrolls in the Chinese character—Ebenezer, “Hitherto hath the Lord helped us”; and Jehovah-Jireh, “The Lord will provide”—and he kept us from doubting for a moment.
That very day the mail came in, a week sooner than was expected (emphasis mine), and Mr. Jones received $214. We thanked God and took courage.
On Monday the poor had their breakfast as usual, for we had not told them not to come, being assured that it was the Lord’s work, and that the Lord would provide. We could not help our eyes filling with tears of gratitude when we saw not only our own needs supplied, but the widow and the orphan, the blind and the lame, the friendless and the destitute, together provided for by the bounty of him who feeds the ravens."
Now, if our hearts are not dually inflamed with worship to YHWH-JIREH and conviction of trust... we have walked a long way away from our shepherd.