One thing I learned from years of homeless ministry is that there are countless stories behind those who have no place to go.
I also learned that it’s an honor to help someone who is truly in need. It’s an opportunity to be an example of God’s love or an answered prayer.
Even if they are homeless because of irresponsible behavior, you can be an example that God is real and restore someone’s hope in the goodness of man.
And remember this, we are all one catastrophic natural disaster that overwhelms our systems of insurance and aid away from all of us being destitute.
Our civilization and age of technology are like dots on the timeline of history and very fragile. God has not promised it will always be this way. For example, I live in the Memphis TN area. We live near the New Madrid fault. A series of earthquakes occurred in the early 1800’s that were so powerful, they made the Mississippi River flow backwards and reportedly rang the Liberty Bell. Most people in this area don’t have earthquake insurance because it is extremely expensive. Imagine if that happened today. Now imagine a great earthquake happened at the same time in California (the Big One), hurricanes on the Gulf and East Coast, Tsunamis on the Northwest Coast, devastating tornadoes in the Midwest, and horrendous flooding across The United States ALL AT ONCE. ALL AT THE SAME TIME! Even the wealthy would be left homeless. Even ‘doomsday preppers’ would be left with what they’ve stored destroyed and destitute.
The next time you see a homeless person, try to see yourself…your children…your parents in that situation. And, even if they are scammers, helping them won’t ‘break’ you and God will judge them. Either way, you have been obedient and left behind a strong testimony that God lives, and He is love.
Hide these scriptures in your heart…
Proverbs 28:2 (NKJV)
27 (A)He who gives to the poor will not lack,
But he who hides his eyes will have many curses.
1 John 3:16-18 (NASB)
16 We know love by this, that He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.17 But whoever has the world’s goods, and sees his brother in need and closes his [a]heart [b]against him, how does the love of God abide in him?18 Little children, let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth.
James 2:15-20 NKJV
If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, and one of you says to them, “Depart in peace, be warmed and filled,” but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit? Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. But someone will say, “You have faith, and I have works.” Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe—and tremble! But do you want to know, O foolish man, that faith without works is dead?
Matthew 25:37-40 (NKJV)
37 “Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You,or thirsty and give You drink? 38 When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? 39 Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ 40 And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, (A)inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’