“Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due,
When it is in your power to do it.
Do not say to your neighbor, “Go, and come back,
And tomorrow I will give it,”
When you have it with you.
Do not devise harm against your neighbor,
While he lives securely beside you.
Do not contend with a man without cause,
If he has done you no harm.
Do not envy a man of violence
And do not choose any of his ways.
For the devious are an abomination to the Lord;
But He is intimate with the upright.
The curse of the Lord is on the house of the wicked,
But He blesses the dwelling of the righteous.
Though He scoffs at the scoffers,
Yet He gives grace to the afflicted.”
How many times do we fail to help each other when we have the ability to do so? The Church seems to be broken in this matter. It seems many churches tend to help those who meet their criteria and will promote their agendas. A certain church may only help outsiders in order to bring in more people to their building, yet, when a member has a real need, the church rejects that member. Other churches will only help people within their denomination. Yet, God clearly says to help one another both in the above verse and throughout the Bible.
“Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God” (Hebrews 13:16).
This is also a problem in the family unit. A hungry infant is made to wait to eat and drink in order to teach him/her “who is in control.” A tired toddler in need of snuggles is told to stop whining or is punished. A school-aged child needing to talk about an upsetting event is told not to interrupt a phone conversation.
Yes, there are times when children need to wait, but the introductory verse tells us to meet our neighbor’s need right away if possible. Yes, anyone, including our children, are our neighbors. Just think how much more connected we could be with our children and others if we would just put them first when possible! Children rely on us just as we rely on God. God never puts us on hold while He sees to other matters. He is always attending to our needs in some way.
Finally, the last part of Proverbs 3:27-34 says do not envy violent men. This applies to spanking/hitting children too. God hates violence. We see this in the teachings of Jesus. To strike a child is an act of violence.
Let us do our best to give others and our children what they need whenever possible. Putting them off and/or inflicting pain on children is not what God had in mind.