“Blessed is he who has regard for the weak; the Lord delivers him in times of trouble”.
Ps 41:1 NIV
Someone once made the observation that the Christian community has a strong message for those who are weak but a weak message for those that are strong. In fact the message of the Christian gospel for the strong is very simple: “Help the weak. It will make you stronger”.
The author of Psalm 41 was himself in a weak position and probably felt fairly desperate. He felt that he needed someone strong to help him through the bad patch he was having. Most of all, though, he was a man of God and he believed that the Lord would help him in his present predicament, that of severe illness. There is a hint here of what a later man was going to say about giving and receiving. “Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy” (Matt 5:7 NIV) was part of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount. It is not that a person does something that helps the weak or the poor in order to receive help. But mercy tends to follow those who show it. As does kindness, love and caring.
And of course, God helps you whether you “regard the weak” or not. His kindness and mercy are unconditional whether this is part of the Old Testament message or not. However, by having regard or paying attention to the weak (sometimes translated as “the poor”) a person becomes more able to receive God’s deliverance and forgiveness and is more likely to recognize it and the God who offers it. You are therefore blessed in giving and in receiving.
PRAYER THOUGHT Lord, make me more willing to help the poor and the weak.