This Season of Giving

When I hear the phrase “Season of Giving” I immediately think of all the gifts I need to buy for my family before December 25th. Yet the other day I was reading through the book of Luke and came across chapter 12. In verses 33 and 34 Jesus gives us a straightforward command. “Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will never fail, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. (NIV)

Give to the poor. I find it interesting that this command comes on the heels of the section where Jesus commands us not to worry about having enough. It appears Jesus is saying ‘God knows we need food and clothes, therefore go out and give to the poor.’

Isaiah 58 also talks about sharing our food with the hungry, providing shelter to the poor wanderer, and clothing those who are naked. James1 likewise commands us to care for widows and orphans.

Give to the poor. I love giving Christmas gifts to my family, but no where in scripture am I commanded to do so. I am told by scripture to love and provide for my family (1 Timothy 5:4). But…my family can hardly be described as poor. Our pantries and closets are bursting at the seams.

Give to the poor. Actually, Jesus said to “Sell your possessions and give to the poor.” I do have a couple of automatic donations that come out of my checking account every month, but the money I give does not require me to sell anything. I have been challenged this year to give more. Much more.

See the source image

I pray that you will join me in this challenge. When you give to a large ministry through mail or online, be sure to check out its rating with groups like GuideStar and Charity Navigator. Don’t forget local needs as well. Local food banks and community organizations touch people right where you live. And it is great to give money, but they also need volunteers to give of their time and talents.

Join me in reaching out to the widows and orphans this Christmas season—and all year long.

Give, but give until it hurts.

Mother teresa

Here are a few ministries which I support and highly recommend.

  1. CompassionInternational  https://www.compassion.com/
  2. Special K Ranch   http://specialkranch.org/
  3. Four Corners Home for Children (Navajo Ministries)  http://www.fourcornershomeforchildren.org/

Leave a comment: Which ministries do you recommend? Why are they important to you?

For Heaven’s Sake “Keep the Soil Covered.”

Guest Post – My friends Wayne and Connie Burleson travel the world teaching people everywhere to grow their own food. 

Find them here:  http://farmer-to-farmer.org/volunteer/stories/wayne-burleson

And herehttps://www.amazon.com/Gardening-Life-Required-Illustrated-Growing/dp/0989286304

(Excerpts from NAKED LAND NO MORE articles)    By Wayne Burleson

Let’s wakeup everyone, especially gardeners, ranchers and farmers.  Poor soils equate to poor life. No soils, no life. Healthy soils, healthy life. If you look out your windows or walk on the land and see naked soils, these soils are dying, and economics are dropping.

The words “Naked Land” comes from a trip to Tanzania, Africa.  An elder African fellow that has a very interesting museum at the base of the famed Mount Kilimanjaro made the following impacting statement to us:  For 2,000 years after the invention of iron; “Man has been making the land naked.” (meaning no cover).  Impacting statement, but true!

An African shepherd leads his goats across a large dusty plain, a few scraggly trees and bushes are the only green for miles.

Bare soil leads toward death.  Covered soil leads toward health.  It’s that simple.  Dust kills – Covered heals.

If you have trouble understanding this biological law, just try laying out flat on the ground, with no clothes on some warm day and see what happens to your skin.  Your uncovered skin will start to burn immediately. Stay there all day with no sun protection and you will cook yourself into the hospital.  This same principle applies to the land, your flower beds, vegetable gardens, croplands and even pasture lands.

Sun cooked soil becomes very hot, plus the ultraviolet light kills valuable microorganism that live in the soils.  Their job is to build and grow new soils.  The long-term effect of this affects all of us.  The big picture is that our weather patterns can go completely nutso.  Is this happening today?  Yep, just turn on the news and you will see it, someone is always talking and showing news clips about extreme weather events.

I listen to these climate reports documenting catastrophic fires, floods, droughts, and intensifying hurricanes that are killing people.  Most reports talk about global warming caused by industrial factories, carbon dioxide emissions, the burning of fossil fuels … carbon going up into the atmosphere.  Seldom do I hear that these devastating events are being caused by poor land management.  Farmers are making the land naked by plowing, tilling and severe overgrazing.  Plus, the millions of African farmers burning their croplands sending valuable carbon the wrong way – up, instead of down into or leaving the carbon (plant matter) laying on top of the soils surface, where it is badly needed. 

Naked land leads to death.
  • Loss of WATER            
  • Loss of SOILS
  • Loss of PROFITS               
  • Loss of HEALTH
  • Loss of PRODUCTION

    Even Leads to Civil Unrest & Wars

Try growing a crop on this naked farmland in Tanzania Africa.  It will cost a pile of money using “Chemical Farming.” Sometimes 80% of the farmer’s gross income. 

We have published a book Gardening for Life – No Money Required.  For those interested in more information, watch our YouTube video.  Just Google “Top 5 ways to grow food with no money

The point of this article is; Please do your best to keep naked land covered.  Our lives depend on you.