An American friend of mine mentioned the other day that a poor couple she knows lost their beloved dog to cancer, and that the couple never had the money to take the pet to a vet.
It had to be heart-breaking for the couple to watch the dog suffer. Anybody who ever had a dog knows that a dog can be as much a part of the family unit as any human member of the family.
But so it goes when one lives in what I call “Poordom”–“Poordom” being a word for poverty that my mother casually spoke one time when we were discussing her struggles in growing up after her father abandoned her.
The poor face struggles and losses that we who are well-to-do never think about. The lack of money for vet care, for example, is something that never crossed my mind until my friend back home raised up that poor couple’s loss of their pet to cancer.
It’s obvious from almost every page in the Bible that God has a special place in God’s heart for the poor. That doesn’t mean that God doesn’t love the rich or that God excludes the wealthy or that money is the root of all evil.
(Once more for the record, because this can’t be repeated enough–it’s the love of money that is the root of all evil.)
It just means that God has an abiding concern for the poor and that God wants us to lift up the poor every chance we get.
I’ll have more thoughts to share about the poor and the little hells of poverty (like no money for a vet) this week.
Meanwhile, remember that to know God, you don’t have to know church creeds or doctrines or polity–Jesus never gave anybody an exam about what to do and know to be a Christian.
But it’s obvious from scripture that God’s love and concern for the poor is such that God wants you to know God by knowing the poor.
“He judged the cause of the poor and needy; then it was well with him. ‘Is not this to know me?’ says the Lord.”
— Jeremiah 22: 16