Don't Forget the Why
Proverbs 31:8-9 (NIV)
“Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.”
Luke 4:17-19 (NIV)
“[Jesus] stood up to read, and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written: ‘The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.’”
1 Timothy 6:18 (NIV)
“Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share.”
Don’t forget the Why?
Sometimes it is easy to forget your why? Organizations particularly struggle with this. They know what they do but they forget why they do it.
An example of this is Sears and Roebuck. They are of course are in bankruptcy and most analysts say they are a dying company, due to globalization, changing consumers, and Amazon.com. However, I think there is another reason: Sears and Roebuck lost its why.
You may or may not be aware that the Sears mission statement is: “To grow our business by providing quality products and services at great value when and where our customers want them, and by building positive, lasting relationships with our customers.”
In my opinion, that last part—building positive lasting relationships with customer—hasn’t happened in a long time.
My anecdotal evidence of this comes from the great dishwasher hunt of 2019. During this experience we visited Sears. During our time in the store there was no positive relationship built—to say the least. They had the products and I could have gotten them right then and there I guess, but the salesperson made me feel like an inconvenience and certainly knew very little about dishwashers. Not only that, he had no desire to find the answers to my questions. I found the answers to my questions myself by Googling the product! We eventually bought elsewhere.
I say all of this to remind the church to be careful. Churches, like any organization, can get really busy at doing stuff and forget to think about why they do it.
For example, a church near me sent out a flyer for Easter saying they were giving away T-shirts to everyone who visited for worship on Easter…and that if you signed in your name would be entered in a drawing for Braves tickets.
Now I strongly believe in evangelism, but I wonder about the message visitors received from this congregation.
Most of the time when you come to church here you will be challenged to give and do and sacrifice. I cannot even imagine drawing your name out of a hat at the end of church for ball game tickets. A little candy is your best hope!
But I do hope each and every time you are challenged to service, you are also are reminded of the why.
And alas the why isn’t because we want to, or because it feels good, or because statistics say we should do it for the common good of the society.
I could tell you that 20-25% of children in Walker County lack food security.
I could also tell you the implications of childhood food insecurity according to the
National Scientific Council on the Developing Child.
“Although food insecurity is harmful to any individual, food insecurity is particularly devastating among children due to their increased vulnerability and the potential for long-term consequences. Several studies have demonstrated that food insecurity impacts cognitive development among young children and is linked to poorer school performance. Other data show the health consequences of food insecurity among children, including increased illness and higher associated health costs.
The structural foundation for cognitive functioning is laid in early childhood, creating the underlying circuitry on which more complex processes are built. This foundation can be greatly affected by food insecurity. Inadequate nutrition can permanently alter a child’s brain architecture and stunt their intellectual capacity, affecting the child’s learning, social interaction, and productivity. Children who do not receive what they need for strong, healthy brain development during early childhood may never recover their lost potential for cognitive growth and eventual contributions to society.”
This information, while valuable, may help folks like the Rotary or a business collect canned goods for the impoverished, but for those of us in the church this is not our why.
Our why is because from the beginning of our faith’s story, for God’s people have been called to compassion. We in the church are called to express our love for God by showing love to His most precious creation—humanity.
We are called to love because God loves us, and LOVE DOES. Love matters most.
And if that is what we believe then we must act on it and that is our why.
I encourage us all to remember that why--both this and every day.
Please pray for those who have lost loved ones.
Please pray for Anne and the heeling of her arm.
Please continue to prayer for Louise Burton (Clay’s grandmother)
Please pray for Teri Hall who has been diagnosed with lymphoma.
Please pray for Heather Holloway, Glenda’s daughter, as she recovers from back surgery.
Please pray for Toni Autello who has had a severe sinus and throat infection for several weeks.
Please pray for Rob Lamborn as he undergoes radiation treatments for a melanoma tumor inside his eye.
Please pray for Sue Shuford, a family friend of Richard Carlton’s. She is facing major back surgery due to osteoporosis and RA damage to her T12. A date has not yet been scheduled for surgery.
From Friends Feeding Friends: Please pray for Charlotte Arnold who has a spot on her lung.
Please keep Suzy Smith in your prayers as she copes with cancer. (submitted by Jane Shelton)
Please keep Matt Degutes and his family in your prayers. He was a neighbor of Richard and Ray’s and his daughter and family live here. His cancer has returned and the final decision is no further action.
Please keep Phil Shelton and his family in your prayers as Phil recovers from a stroke.
Please pray for Richard’s brother, Michael Carlton, who recently had a kidney transplant.
Pray for Jessica Forester who is stationed near Dallas, TX.
Please pray for Steven and the Denson Family.
Please continue to pray for all those in our church family with special needs: Bob Lamborn, Zee Martin, Toni Autullo, Harold Wilson, Melissa, and Walter.