Two weeks ago, I went food shopping for the family, and for the first times since I have been in the UK, I noticed empty shelves in the supermarket. Tesco and Sainsburys in Didcot had run out of some essential food items and products due to panic buyers. I had a decision to make as a father, whether to think about the needs of my family and panic buy from several shops or to think about the welfare of others. I made the decision to buy what we needed, although we were faced with the potential that perhaps there wouldn’t be enough food in the store the next time I went shopping.
That week, we had people offer and drop off items such as sanitiser gels, toilet rolls and nappies when we needed them. This goes to show the beauty and love expressed in the church, but it also points to the fact that when we seek the welfare of others, God also provides for our needs. It reminds me of Solomon’s dream when the Lord appeared to him and asked him to wish what he wants. Solomon’s response was,
“Give your servant therefore an understanding mind to govern your people, that I may discern between good and evil, for who is able to govern this your great people?” 1 Kings 3:9
Although it appears that Solomon asked for understanding or the personal competence to govern and judge between matters, the result of his request (good governance) would have led to social and economic welfare. In seeking the welfare of all, God in turn blessed Solomon with wisdom, riches and honour far beyond any king during his era.
The Bible is full of many teachings about considering the welfare of others. The Golden Rule, “Do to others as you would have them do to you” (Luke 6:31), is essentially about being selfless, thoughtful and seeking the good of others. Although we all find ourselves in an uncomfortable and unfamiliar place during this lockdown, it also gives us an opportunity to be blessed as we seek the welfare of others. I would encourage you to check up on one another during these times.