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'Lending to Those in Need'

St. Lawrence

Blessed the man who is gracious and lends to those in need.

- Psalm 112:5 (Responsorial)

How good are you at lending things? As a child, did you ever lend your toys to your siblings or friends? As a teenager, did you ever lend someone your clothes, your records or tapes, your notes from class? What makes lending difficult is twofold. First, you have to let go of whatever you are lending. And second, you never know in what condition the item will be returned. Lending takes trust. It also takes love.

It is relatively easy to lend things to others, though. It is more difficult to lend ourselves or our time. Today, we might want to consider one of these lendings. Lend someone your hand by helping him with a project. Lend someone your ear by listening to her story, fears or concerns. Lend someone your tongue by speaking to him with kindness and respect. Lend someone your feet by walking beside him or running an errand for her.

Loving God, help me to be more gracious in the ways I lend my things and myself to others.

- Sr. Melannie Svoboda, S.N.D.
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Thank you Sr. Melannie for your beautiful devotion. Your devotions always seem to hit home.

I've never had any problems with "giving" material things, or myself whenever I am asked for help with whatever the case may be to strangers, family or friends. I will always help in that way.

It's the "lending someone my ear by "listening", is where I have problems with. I don't do so well listening, I quickly want to give advise and give my input and feedback on what they might want to do without fully listening to their stories, concerns and heartaches. I don't like that about myself, and I have been working on "listening" and will continue to work on it until I can "lend my ear" graciously.
Tillie | Posted on: 2018-08-10 15:12:39
Beautiful Reflection.
Thank you Sr. Melannie.
JS | Posted on: 2018-08-10 11:18:05
Today's readings reminds me of the book I just finished reading (I don't have the gift of reading so finishing a book is rare for me!)

"GIVING IT ALL AWAY AND GETTING IT ALL BACK AGAIN by David Green, the founder of Hobby Lobby.

David says one of the keys to his success is giving. He has learned to “steward his resources with a heavenly mindset.” In fact, he says that while his family was called to ministry from the pulpit, he was specifically called to retail. He says God gives him resources through his business and trusts him to give to people, countries, communities, and organizations in need.

Although everyone doesn’t have a business, David demonstrates how everyone can give. There were many times when God directed him to give far more than he had. He once sensed God telling him to give ,000 to an overseas ministry. But Hobby Lobby only had 4 stores at that point, and did not have ,000 extra. Yet because he wanted to obey God, he found a way to give. He post-dated four ,500 checks and mailed them to the ministry. As it turns out, the ministry was praying for that exact amount of money on the very day David postmarked the checks. After taking the step of faith, the Lord covered the Hobby Lobby checks. “My journey into generosity has shown me two important things, among others,” he said. “First, generosity has a starting point. You don’t just wake up one day and poof, you’re generous. It begins with a decision to steward your resources with a heavenly mindset. Second, generosity depends not on how much money we have but the posture of our hearts.”

Today, Hobby Lobby has over 700 stores and has reached billion in revenues. David has taken the same salary for the past 11 years, and under his direction, Hobby Lobby gives away roughly 50% of its pre-tax earnings to evangelical ministries."

Lending/giving goes beyond helping someone in need.....2 Corinthians 9:7, "Each must do as already determined, without sadness or compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver." It is pre-determined without pouting or complaining and with a cheerful and grateful heart! I learn to love these as opportunities to see God at work :-)

Here is what God says:
* Luke 6:31-36, "Do to others as you would have them do to you. “If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that. And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full. But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful."
* Proverbs 19:17, "Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the Lord, and He will reward them for what they have done."
* Psalm 37:26, "They are always generous and lend freely; their children will be a blessing."

I am blessed as I fear the LORD, and I greatly delight in Your commands...An evil report I shall not fear; my heart is firm, trusting in the LORD. My heart is steadfast; I shall not fear till I look down upon my foes. I follow You, Lord Jesus, I will not walk in darkness
but will have the Light of life! Amen! (Psalm 112:1,7-8; John 8:12)
Salina | Posted on: 2018-08-10 10:40:22
Salina you could not be so insightful without reading.I enjoy your comments knees replaced on March working well. Son and wife still a challenge accepting. Holy spirit gives me strength
Kjc | Posted on:: 2018-08-10 10:58:44
I can't, but He can!!! The Bible is the only constant reading companion I can stick with, everything else I fall asleep on???
Salina | Posted on:: 2018-08-10 18:57:41
I am a sinner and there are still many things that I struggle with and continue to work on. But the one area that I do feel very good about is giving my time to others. And still, I know that there are others who do more.

Reflecting on Sr. Melanie's comments today, I can confidently check off my mental list - helping others wit projects, listening to other's stories, speaking with kindness and respect, and running errands for someone. This is something that I do weekly. It has become a part of my life.

Thank you Holy Spirit for giving me these gifts! The fruits of these gifts give me inner peace and contentment.And thank You, Heavenly Father for Sister Melanie!
Linda | Posted on: 2018-08-10 09:00:43

Matthew 25:21, 23, “His (Linda's) Master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your Master’s happiness!"
Salina | Posted on:: 2018-08-10 10:11:28
freeter | Posted on: 2018-08-10 08:24:04
Amen. Thank you Holy Father for this beautiful day and for today's Gospel. Thank you Lord for my faith, my life and for my family. Thank you Holy Father most of all for your great sacrifice and for the opportunity of forgiveness and Reconcilliation. Please Lord have mercy. Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God, have mercy on me, a sinner. Praise to you Lord Jesus Christ, King of Endless Glory. Amen
Thank you Thank you Thank you Holy Father
A sinner | Posted on: 2018-08-10 08:07:12
Sr Melanie this devotional speaks to me .
My girlfriend has one leg that has no knee her leg does not bend.
I’m her feet. I take her with me when I go grocery shopping ...
Thank you Jesus for sending me a friend.
Thank you Jesus for showering me with Graces when I do your will.
Ana | Posted on: 2018-08-10 08:00:15
I love this reflection. It is so wonderful.
Kristi | Posted on: 2018-08-10 07:57:49
I love your perspective Sister Mellanie on corporal and spiritual acts of mercy. I guess my perspective has largely been on the word "sacrifice," not lend. And certainly not on "lending" an ear, a hand, a tongue, my feet. Your perspective brings it closer to home and intimate. Like something Huck Finn might do for Tom Sawyer or Negro Jim. Lending is something I usually do with people I love, trust, and want to help. Making a "sacrifice" seems to bring something too quickly to the realm of martyrdom for me and harder to do. Lending is something you do for friends. And we try to enlarge that population of friends throughout our life.
Ken | Posted on: 2018-08-10 07:57:45
What a wonderful reflection. The ability to listen to others, to truly listen to others, to allow them to express their fears and suffering as a loving, consoling friend, is a great gift.

Too often, we express our own fears by responding in ways that suggest if only their faith was stronger their problems would be solved. This is cruel,
David | Posted on: 2018-08-10 07:50:36
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