Each of you must give as you have made up your mind, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. -2 Corinthians 9:6
Dear members and friends,
One of the core messages of the Bible is sharing what I have with those who are in need. Humans are born unequally and into conditions, abilities, and environments that could not be justified as fair. Thus, claiming one’s success as due solely to one’s own efforts is not only silly, but also untrue. At the same time, those in needy or desperate situations are not totally responsible for their circumstances either. It is undeniable that our innate ability and environment greatly affect what each of us achieves in this world.
If we were to look at the big picture, there is a reason why we are here with each other. Our focus must be not about either envying the worldly success of the rich or despising the misery of the poor, but about understanding and accepting each other as our God-given neighbors. The true goal of humans in history has never been to be better or wealthier than others, but to build a secure and prosperous community. In other words, humans have always been inclusive of others in their vision of a happy and ideal life. We need each other physically, mentally, and spiritually. Sometimes, it is good just to be honest about that, but most especially with Thanksgiving and the Advent season just around the corner.
My brothers and sisters in God, let us use this season as a good opportunity to be honest about our genuine need for each other. It has been proven for thousands of years that what truly satisfies a human heart is neither gold nor victory nor fame, but a loving and trusting relationship with other humans! And love and trust are never made of gold or victory, but built by means of honest and intentionally cultivated relationships.
Blessings, Rev. Junchol Lee