“But if anyone has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him? Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed in truth.” -Jesus
At Vista, we set aside a portion of what YOU give to help the poor and needy in our community. The reason is because Jesus loves the poor. While we give to local organizations like Helping Hands and CTLC, we also invite people into our church and provide additional help.
Every Monday and Wednesday we meet with applicants face to face and discuss their hardships and how we can best serve them. There have been many beautiful relationships formed through this ministry. Currently, we have over 30 people attending our services who were initially served through our benevolence program. It is my hope that this grows astronomically. Any time we help someone, I inform them that if they are part of our community, then they will always be helped and cared for. So far, this has proven true. That is was the church is— A mixed bag. Black and white, rich and poor. All are welcome. All are family.
From time to time I get a little push back on this ministry. I am asked fair questions like—how do you really know if a person is being wise with their money? Do you not think they could actually work…they look pretty healthy? The answer is, we can’t always know the intricate details of every situation. While we do our best to check references and backgrounds, those are things we can’t always know.
But here is what I do know.
God is generous. Like really generous. He’s not super worried about getting taking advantage of. I mean… take a look at this party:
“He said also to the man who had invited him, “When you give a dinner or a banquet, do not invite your friends or your brothers or your relatives or rich neighbors, lest they also invite you in return and you be repaid. But when you give a feast, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you. For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the just.”
That is what God is like.
That is what we want to look like.
We don’t look for excuses not to give. Rather, we look for excuses TO give.
When asked for help, we don’t pass the buck. Rather, we say yes!
I am excited about what God is teaching us about serving and loving the poor of our city. We have lots of room to grow but I believe we are heading in the right direction.
Because of your generosity as a church, this is what we have been able to do this month in September:
– Pay the deposit to house a homeless family who had been living in their car for a year
– Turn the electricity back on for two separate veterans, and a widow
– Pay the rent of someone struggling with unemployment
– Keep a student in a school where they thrive and have friends
– Turn the water on for a family of 6
– Put food on the table for a family of 5
Thank you Vista for all you do, you are making an impact for the Kingdom.