Matthew Chapter 6
1“Be careful not to do your ‘acts of righteousness’ before men, to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven.
2“So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. 3But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, 4so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.
I read this in my devotions yesterday morning and it immediately brought to my mind our sister in faith, Bibi. I was visiting a ministry the other day where they had displayed, what i would call a “wall of fame” of dozens of before and after photos of children that they had helped to better places in life. As you can imagine, the before photos were always rather pathetic looking and the after photos were demonstrations and works of the beauty of God’s kingdom.
At home, Gina and I like to watch those home makeover television shows from time to time and it dawned on me to question this ministry behavior…are we treating those that the Lord calls us to minister to like a makeover television show. I was looking at the recent photos of Bibi and Suny taken just days ago and they are beautiful, and when I can get them posted next week, I certainly will, but I still find it amazing that we really have no photographic evidence of the times “before.” I do take a great deal of photos, but for some reason, we have none of either. I found a behind view of Bibi on the day we met, but that’s all. I am coming to learn that God only sees us as beautiful creations and nothing more. That goes for Suny, Bibi, me, and even you! Thank you Lord for teaching me this lesson that what really matters is the works done to glorify himself and the only intended audience is God. We don’t need to be like the Pharisees and demonstrate our works before others.
Yesterday, yes, another crazy day. I had an awesome visit with Lhakpa’s eldest brother, Tsering. We talked for such a long time, I think, three hours about a variety of topics like politics, Mustang, health, and why I want to minister near his ancestral village. The latter, he absolutely cannot understand though he clearly approves. The issues of Lhakpa’s faith did not come up, but I know that he knows and it needs to remain a matter of prayer. On Friday, I will go to the monastery where another sister lives as a monk nun for a brief visit. Pray for me too, if you think of it.
While there is so much more to tell, I will leave it at that for now and talk to you all again in a day or two. To my darling wife, ” I love you and thank you for allowing me to serve as called!”
~Carl for Arise Medical Missions (Nepal)