Written by Freddie Teague
I watched the first episode of the Philanthropist on NBC. I was motivated. I am not going to lie. There was a desire within me to get “out there” and make a difference in the life of the oppressed. The character, who is a CEO of a multi-billion dollar company, decides, based on an event in his own life, to help bring life to others with what resources and energy he has. He is displayed as going through obstacles to ensure that he was able to deliver some medical supplies to a third-world village and the joy and gratefulness of those who’ve received the medicines. At first look, it is what Christ is all about. The show appears to demonstrate that bringing life and resources to those who are far less fortunate is one of high admiration.
But then, the character uses the story of his recent activities to pick up a bartender in the process. I also observed that at the close of his story, he states that he “made love” to the medical assistant in the village who aided him back to health from a snake bite he’d acquired. Not really motivating is it? I am not judging the man and his actions taken based on his decisions made with the assistant, but I was wondering…what separates our ambitions and drive to help and aid the oppressed from those whose ambition is to “pick up” attractive women?
The answer is love. Paul, an advocate to the account of Christ, states that he may even sell all of his possessions and give them to the poor, but if he does not have love, he is nothing. There have been many times that I’ve thought about the reason that these companies and actors do what they do to help with aid. Is it for marketing purposes? Do they do it to bring a more friendly appeal, to cause consumers to purchase from them knowing that they do “good” unto others? More often than not, as we read the accounts of Christ, we see that He was moved to compassion when He witnessed particular circumstances. Remember, Jesus wept.
This places me in a position to ask myself, do I contribute for the sake of obligation or for recognition? Do I desire to bring life from death and oppression for selfish reasons? Am I moved by compassion and love for those for whom Christ loves and has compassion? Do I display the love of Christ in a real and raw way? Do I love others like He loves me?
“…faith, hope, and love: the greatest of these is love.” – Paul