“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.”
Proverbs 31:8-9 (NIV)
If you want to live a successful life, the Bible offers some countercultural instruction: Serve the poor!
How can serving the poor help us be successful?
The Bible gives us numerous reasons why this is so, but here are just a few of them:
It’ll make you happy. “If you want to be happy, be kind to the poor; it is a sin to despise anyone” (Proverbs 14:21 GNT).
You’ll honor God. “Whoever mistreats the poor insults their Maker, but whoever is kind to the needy honors God”(Proverbs 14:31 NCV).
It’ll make you a better leader. “Leadership gains authority and respect when the voiceless poor are treated fairly” (Proverbs 29:14 The Message).
I’ve seen this in my own life. Some of you know my story. When I wrote The Purpose Driven Life, the book became a huge global success.
And when you write a book that has as its first line, “It’s not about you,” it’s pretty easy to realize that any money or influence that comes from it wasn’t meant for me. So, among other decisions Kay and I made at the time, we started Acts of Mercy, a foundation to help the poor and the vulnerable suffering with AIDS.
The book’s success was not about me. It was all about God.
Proverbs 31:8-9 particularly spoke to me during this time: “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” (NIV).
That’s what successful people do. They stand up for those who can’t stand up for themselves.
Talk It Over
Why is it important for successful people to help the poor and stand up for those who can’t stand up for themselves?
How is it countercultural for successful people to help the poor and needy?
What can you do to more faithfully help the poor?
The Elevation Church (TEC) has been set up by God to develop its members as witnesses of Christ while empowering them to achieve the highest levels of distinction in life, led by Pastor Godman Akinlabi, the church is based in Nigeria with multiple expressions in Lagos.