ON CHRIS­TIAN­ITY

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - NOTHWEST/TELEVISION - bil­ly­gra­ham.org BILLY GRA­HAM Write to Billy Gra­ham in care of Billy Gra­ham Evan­ge­lis­tic As­so­ci­a­tion, 1 Billy Gra­ham Parkway, Char­lotte, N.C. 28201 or visit the web­site at

DEAR REV. GRA­HAM: I try to be gen­er­ous when it comes to sup­port­ing projects that help peo­ple in our own com­mu­nity (in­clud­ing our church), but I can’t get ex­cited about send­ing money to mis­sion projects in other coun­tries. How do I know it won’t be wasted, or even stolen? We have enough needs right here.

— L.R. DEAR L.R: You’re right, up to a point; no mat­ter where we look to­day, the needs in our world are al­most over­whelm­ing. Even if you were blessed with enor­mous wealth, you still couldn’t over­come all the sick­ness and ig­no­rance and suf­fer­ing in the world; the needs are sim­ply too great. Je­sus healed large num­bers of peo­ple when He was on Earth — but He didn’t heal ev­ery­one, nor will we.

But this doesn’t mean we ought to give up, or shut our eyes to the spir­i­tual and phys­i­cal needs around us — not at all. Over the years, I’ve vis­ited dozens of im­pov­er­ished parts of the world, and I’ve al­ways been struck by their hard­ships and their lack of re­sources. But I’ve also been touched by how lit­tle it of­ten takes to make a deep and last­ing dif­fer­ence in some­one’s life. A new well … a mod­ern health clinic … a school for or­phaned chil­dren … the list of needed projects is al­most end­less.

What can you do? First, pray and seek God’s will con­cern­ing your giv­ing. In ad­di­tion, ask God to help you see the world the way He sees it — not just part of it, but all of it. Christ loves the whole world — and so should we.

I sug­gest you also give through rep­utable or­ga­ni­za­tions that mon­i­tor their work care­fully and hon­estly. When Paul col­lected money for those in need, he took spe­cial pre­cau­tions “to avoid any crit­i­cism of the way we ad­min­is­ter this lib­eral gift” (2 Corinthi­ans 8:20).

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