Monday, February 23, 2015

Comparison: The Enemy of Contentment, Friend of Complacency

It's been said that comparison is the enemy of contentment, that comparing our lives to others causes us to be envious, to forget to be thankful for all that we have. But, I think there may be a greater danger to comparison ~ complacency.

As believers, it's really easy to look around us in the world we live in today and become complacent. It's easy to say that we're doing good enough for Jesus because it's easy to find people doing less. But, our goal is not to be like other believers, it's to be Christ-like, to be His hands and feet, to share the gospel with our actions not just our mouths. Because, trust me, trying to witness to someone who doesn't know where their kids' next meal will come from won't do much. Meeting people's physical needs in the name of Jesus is the first step of sharing the gospel.

I used to feel like I was getting this 'Jesus thing' pretty well. I was in church every time the doors opened, I was doing life with other believers, listening to Christian music. It felt good, I felt good about myself. And, while that wasn't a bad thing I didn't know that I was missing out on a much more intimate relationship with Jesus.

My complacency started to shake several years ago when I first became friends with people who were crossing oceans to bring home special needs children, with friends who were putting their hearts on the line to stand in the gap for children in foster care, friends who were giving up their comfortable American lives to go and serve in places where most of us wouldn't want to spend the night.

My friends Mandy and Marty, along with their two oldest children are heading to Guatemala soon. It's how they chose to celebrate their 15th wedding anniversary...not by going on a tropical vacation, but by going to serve the least of these.

The Rhodes family on the day they brought their daughter Klemi home from Bulgaria.

 They'll be staying with our friends Susie and Jack and their family, working with the ministry that they are serving with in Guatemala.

You can read more about Susie and Jack, their family and their mission in Guatemala  over on their blog here. You can learn more about the ministry they are involved with here. Susie and Jack  live a life that totally steps on my toes. See they gave up every thing: a nice home, a good job, a comfortable American life with their 6 children (3 of whom were adopted, one of whom has significant special needs) to go and serve for two years as missionaries to the people of Guatemala.

The ministry they're serving with has a lot of goals, most revolving around being Jesus to the least of these by meeting their most basic physical needs. There are so many families there living in abject poverty, in homes made from mud and cardboard, with no electricity, no running water. The ministry team does a lot of things in the community they serve in but one of the most drastic is providing homes for as many of these families as possible. And, how much does it cost to provide a safe, clean home, with electricity and clean water? $3,000

No, I didn't forget a zero up there. $3,000 is all it takes to completely turn a family's life around. While the Rhodes family is in Guatemala they'll have the privilege of helping to build homes for at least two family's. The first family that Mandy shared, the cost of their entire home was covered by one donor whose heart was moved by their story. It would have been easy for Mandy to say, "Thank you God, you rock!" and consider her job done. After all, they were only asked to raise the money for one home. But, there's another family who needs a home. So, Mandy and Marty are still working to raise the money for this family.

Clicking that link will take you to the GoFundMe page Mandy set up. You can read more about the family whose lives will be forever changed by having a safe home. While you're there you can make a donation and I pray that you will feel led to do so. They need just over $2300 to be fully funded for this 2nd family's home. Please pray for this family and consider making a gift towards providing a home for them. Every $ adds up, can you spare $5 today to change a family's life?

Click here to make your donation!


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