Praying with God's Heart for the Poor

by Denise C. Koenig, World Vision on April 15, 2016


The Bible is rich in wisdom about God’s love for those living in poverty—and about our responsibility to help. We invite you to reflect on these passages and pray for children, families, and communities in need.

God’s heart for the poor:
He saves the needy from the sword in their mouth . . . So the poor have hope, and injustice shuts its mouth. —Job 5:15-16
Father, let World Vision’s work and that of other humanitarian groups bring the hope you desire to people living with few resources. Shut the mouth of injustice that seeks to rob families of what they need to survive.
God’s commands concerning the poor:
If there is a poor man among your brothers in any of the towns of the land that the Lord your God is giving you, do not be hardhearted or tightfisted toward your poor brother. —Deuteronomy 15:7
Great King, help us to cultivate the compassionate heart and attitude you require towards children and families in need. Remind us to regularly share of our bounty with those who have much less.
Blessings for those who serve the poor:
But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed. Although they cannot repay you, you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous. —Luke 14:13-14
Lord Jesus, help us follow you to the edges of society, where people are lonely, suffering, and in great need. Let us give freely with appreciation for all you’ve given to us at no charge.
Why no one should neglect serving the poor:
Now listen, you rich people, weep and wail because of the misery that is coming upon you. …You have lived on earth in luxury and self-indulgence. You have fattened yourselves in the day of slaughter. —James 5:1, 5
Lord of Mercy, we repent for the times we have been unwilling to share what you’ve given us to help others in need. Forgive us for failing you by not serving families that suffer without food or clean water.
Biblical attitudes for believers toward the poor:
Listen, my dear brothers and sisters: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom he promised those who love him? —James 2:5
Great Teacher, open our eyes to the rich faith you have given to those who live in poverty. Help us  learn to have servant’s hearts and live in humility and gratefulness.
God’s identification with the poor:
For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich. —2 Corinthians 8:9
Savior, we often forget the great price you paid to bring us salvation. You became poor that we might be made rich. How thankful we are for your unspeakable gift. Grow our hearts to reflect your gracious love to others in need.
Join Hope Prayer Team and receive a monthly email on ways to pray for World Vision’s work around the world.

This article was originally published on World Vision Magazine
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