The Beggar who gave All

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Beggar who gave All

By Dustin McNeese

2001

It was mid-December and the temperature was expected to drop into the sub-zero range. The boisterous north wind was almost unbearable making the need for shelter a must. As the weather ripped through the old man's skimpy jacket he began to mull over his options. Being homeless and without food or family, his options were very limited. His thoughts raced through his mind, knowing that if he didn't find shelter he wouldn't make it through the night.

In desperation he began going from door to door hoping that someone would afford a spare room in their garage or maybe even an empty bedroom for the night. Everyone's answers were as cold as the outside temperature. Defeated and humiliated, the old man found an overhang that offered a little protection from the wind. As he sat there he noticed that the lights were on in the church across the street. It was much like seeing a lighthouse on a stormy night. A ray of hope, a glimmer of possibility.

Instantly he was up and running toward the open door. As he walked in he notice that it was full, hardly an empty seat anywhere. As he forced his way down the aisle, he found an empty place next to a very well-dressed family. Truth of the matter was that everyone was very well-dressed but him. Soon after he found a seat, the minister began to speak. Although most of the sermon was about the direct correlation between God's love for you and how it is represented by the amount of money in your bank account, suddenly he began to talk about the sacrifice of Jesus and how He was the Way to salvation.

This deeply touched the poor, homeless man. After the message Ushers began to pass around the offertory plates. The old man looked around at the other people in the congregation and noticed that many were smiling and he began to wonder why. Then he realized that there was a sort of competition going on. Many were smiling because they believed that they had given more than others in their pew.

When the plate was brought to him, he asked the Usher to place it on the floor. Although, bewildered, the Usher did as the old man had asked. Then with every eye watching, the old man stood up and placed both feet into the plate. Then with a loud voice he said, "Money and possessions I have few, but everything I have and all that I am, I freely give to God." The people sat in stunned silence, in awe of the words that had just been spoken.

In that moment they realized that the offerings that they had given paled in comparison to the gift this old man had offered. They had all given out of their surplus not out of their need, but this old beggar was offering all to God, even his own life.

Let us ask ourselves how much we have placed in offertory to the God who offered the life of His own Son for us.

Have we been satisfied to merely give 10% which is already holy and is the Lord's?

It crossed my mind how terrible it would be if Jesus had died to cover only 10% of my sins. I would still be hopelessly lost and doomed forever. But He died for 100% of my sins, so should I not give Him 100% of my life?

Instead of being satisfied with the bare minimum it takes to be saved we should strive for the ultimate reward He so desires to give us. Let us take up our cross daily and in every circumstance and strive to live up to the example that was set before us in Jesus. Let us deny ourselves and place both feet in the offering plate.

Like the river written of in Ezekiel 47, let us desire to be in deep enough water that we no longer stand on our own power but are carried by the current of God's will. Let us not be satisfied to sit in the shallows where we are in control our movement.

I feel it is imperative that we place all our worries and problems at the altar of God so we can fully dedicate our lives to doing His work. We must jump headfirst into the unseen and have faith that God will work the details out. God desires us to place our all in the offering plate so that we can be a consistently useful tool for Him.

This may mean falling into uncomfortable circumstances, but He knows the end result. Just as in the above story, God used a poor, homeless beggar to bring an entire congregation to the knowledge of where they were lacking in their service to God.

Sometimes God may ask us to be that poor, homeless man, but we know that He will always use us for the glory and purpose of His divine will, which benefits both Him and us. Simply put, to love, is to give.


 


 

 

 

 

Points of Truth Ministries