It’s easy for us as Christians to steep ourselves into the scriptures. We think about them as hypotheticals or theory, but you can’t separate word from deed. We know that the Bible is filled with passages about serving the vulnerable, but sometimes even followers of Jesus are hesitant to put those things into practice, especially when it comes to engaging with politics or legislation. If our position as American citizens affords us the right to advocate on behalf of the vulnerable, I think that’s exactly what we should be doing.
In January 2016, Kaiser found that of Americans surveyed, the average person thinks that foreign aid accounts for 31 percent of the U.S. budget and 15 percent of people thought it represented at least half. Only 3 percent of Americans surveyed estimated the correct percentage, at one percent or less.
It’s clear to me that foreign aid is a practical way for Americans to live out the things that are close to God’s heart. One way that you can do that is by advocating for legislation that serves the least of these. One such example is the Global Food Security Reauthorization Act.
While that’s a mouthful, here are three things Christians should know about this act.
It offers humanitarian aid after disasters and improves global food security.
We’re called to care of the most vulnerable and those who have suffered at the hands of disasters are among the most vulnerable in the world. It’s not only a Christian response. But an American one also to come to the aid of those suffering under unimaginable circumstances. Global hunger is another thing that breaks God’s heart. When we offer food to those in need, we’re serving Jesus himself. By helping communities become self-sustainable, we’re helping them to also live out their own God-given potential. This is a practical way to move scripture into action.
This act employs the efforts of U.S. government agencies, private sectors, NGOs, and academic institutions.
Unity is a Biblical value. By partnering with other organizations around the world in multiple sectors, we’re living that out. It also highlights the fact that everyone has something to contribute to the issue of global poverty. If we all work together, we can end it in our lifetime.
This act especially seeks to serve women and children.
The organization where I serve, Food for the Hungry, was named in part by Psalm 146:7. It says, “He upholds the cause of the oppressed and gives food to the hungry.”
But I’m compelled to go further into this passage. It continues, “The Lord sets prisoners free, the Lord gives sight to the blind, the Lord lifts up those who are bowed down, the Lord loves the righteous. The Lord watches over the foreigner and sustains the fatherless and the widow, but he frustrates the ways of the wicked.”
This chapter expresses God’s heart for the prisoner, the blind, the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow. I think the command is clear.
If you want to take action for the vulnerable, you can contact your representatives to advocate specifically for the Global Food Security Reauthorization Act. Ask your representative to cosponsor this bill that will teach and empower people to feed their families and curb malnutrition. You can even do it in a few clicks with this easy form.