Give to the one who asks you and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you. (Matthew 5:42)
It’s blatantly obvious Jesus calls all of His children to help those in need, but when does this “helping” get to the point where we are being taken advantage of? In conjunction, can we then separate ourselves from someone who is taking advantage of us? Well, the Bible says “yes” we absolutely can distance ourselves if someone is threatening our peace of mind and illicitly encroaching on our precious household balance driving a “wedge” between our wives or our husbands through arguments on whether or not we should be helping this person.
Bad company corrupts good morals. (1 Corinthians 15:33)
We can also help others to the point where it actually can become detrimental to the person(s) that we think we are helping. If we are continually “saving” someone out of some form of struggle, and this is a chronic behavior on this person’s part then in no way is this actually “helping” them improve their situation.
For even when we were with you, we would give you this command: If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat. (2 Thessalonians 3:10)
There should be a clear line as to the extent of how much we should be helping someone. We should not be “bailing someone out” who is consistently living an irresponsible lifestyle with zero accountability. This is actually a “stumbling block” when we routinely give someone a “handout” who shows no signs of trying to improve their predicament by turning to the Lord. It’s no coincidence that Alcoholics Anonymous groups all across this nation are littered with Christian ideology. This is absolutely by design…His design.
Portions of the 12 step A.A. program:
1. Admit powerlessness over alcohol.
2. Seek help from a higher power.
3. Make amends for past wrongs.
4. Continue to work on personal growth and spiritual development.
Sound familiar? A heart of contrition is a “genuine” heart open for change. It’s only the moment when you finally realize that you are not a victim of circumstances outside of yourself, but you are a victim of your own fleshly desires when you are able to enter a distinct transformative realm. I must admit it’s extremely difficult for me to turn away someone who continually begs me for a “material” reprieve from their sorrows, so I have to remind myself over and over again that their problem is not a physical one but that of a spiritual nature instead. What comes to mind immediately is the parable of the prodigal son. Can I confess that I have prayed to God to make some miserable so they would turn back towards Him? Some that I absolutely love dearly…some that I would call “family”. I have to have faith that in their suffering they will truly see Him.
Christian, we should be steering this person (with love and understanding and not an attitude of condemnation) toward Jesus as oppose to giving this person in need money, food, or even a roof over their head even if we begin to sound like a “broken record” each and every time this person cries to us for help. This is the greatest aide anyone can provide and the absolute most powerful show of compassion.
Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light. (Matthew 11-28:30)