Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Never Forget Where You Come From

Who is Oprah Winfrey?  LOL, what kind of question is that?  We all know who Oprah Winfrey is.  She is the leading daytime television host.  I must say I really do not watch her because in my opinion, I believe her audience target women.  There is nothing wrong with that.  As a man, I just can’t see myself sitting down and watching Oprah, but I must say I watch General Hospital though.  That is another argument.  I also do not hold her in high regard on her stance regarding Jesus not being the only way to God.  I admit that it can be seen as biased, however I have a strong faith, and anyone who opposes my faith….well, our conversations will be very limited.  What I respect about Oprah Winfrey is her philanthropy. 

Philanthropy defined is a goodwill to fellow members of the human race; especially : active effort to promote human welfare.   Oprah Winfrey takes the cake on this one.  It is evident on some of her shows.  She has given members of her audience apparel, jewelry, make-overs and even cars.  It is reported that she donated $50.2 million to the Oprah Winfrey Foundation and Oprah's Angel Network to support the inspiration, empowerment and education of women, children, and families around the world and to encourage people around the world to make a difference in the lives of others.  She gets kudos for that because she was raised poor and despite her sordid past involving sexual abuse, when she made it she looked back where others would have been pleased to keep it moving.  She remembered what she went through, and because she has the means, she helps as much as possible so that others wouldn’t.  She never forgot where she came from.

In the book of Nehemiah, Nehemiah never forgot where he came from.  The bible states that Nehemiah, a descendant from the tribe of Judah was a cup bearer (Neh 1:11) for a Persian King.  A cup-bearer was an officer of high rank in royal courts, whose duty it was to serve the drinks at the royal table. On account of the constant fear of plots and intrigues, a person must be regarded as thoroughly trustworthy to hold this position. He must guard against poison in the king's cup, and was sometimes required to swallow some of the wine before serving it. His confidential relations with the king often gave him a position of great influence. The position of cup bearer is greatly valued and given to only a select few throughout history. Qualifications for the job were not held lightly but of high esteem valued for their beauty and even more for their modesty, industriousness and courage. 

Nehemiah an outsider was in this high position, but prior to that he was in exile, a survivor of the Chaldean siege.  A past that was behind him until recent news fell on his ears.  Nehemiah over heard men talking about his fellow brethren, and hearing of their plight and their poor conditions, he was moved.  He did not consider himself lucky.  He did not say, “oh well, to each his own.”  The bible states “So it was, when I heard these words, that I sat down and wept, and mourned for many days; I was fasting and praying before the God of heaven.” (Ne 1:4)  He prayed and prayed and prayed, and when God answered him in a form of an opportunity (Neh 2:2-4) to do something about what he has heard, he did it without hesitation.  He left comfort to go back to discomfort, for the sake of his brethren to help rebuild Jerusalem.

Too often we who have grown up and were able to leave a poor condition, refuse to look back and help in some way our family and friends left behind.  We have this “the town is in my rear view mirror” attitude.  We use excuses of moving to another state as though that state do not have ghettos similar to yours.  Then we have those who would have busted hell wide open if it was not for hearing and hearing the Word of God, only to keep it to themselves, and not share it with the family and friends they left behind, as though they are not worthy to receive it.  There is a saying  that goes Always be nice to people on the way up; because you’ll meet the same people on the way down”  I would like to add that you never forget where you came from, because it is not guaranteed that you will not return.  Amen!

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