Never take advantage of poor and destitute laborers, whether they are fellow Israelites or foreigners living in your towns.
Relate: I know, the picture and the title are a bit provocative. For those that don’t get it, there was a documentary done about 8 years ago with that title talking about the various ways Wal Mart exploits its workers both in the US and internationally in order to force down low prices and force out small businesses. I never did see the movie, I lived it. For about 3 months I was employed by Wal Mart a decade or so back. They wouldn’t let me have a week off to work at a Christian camp so I quit. Best thing I ever did.
React: I do, however, feel like a bit of a hypocrite even writing that last paragraph. I shop at Wal Mart all the time. It is both cheaper and closer for me than any competitors. I was convicted when I read through most of the reading in Deuteronomy today. I don’t consider myself an exploiter of others. I do tend to be generous to a fault. What I am not is a conscientious shopper. What is the cost for my cup of coffee in the morning to those working the fields? Where was the sweatshirt and the jeans I am wearing made and what are the employees paid there?
Sometimes we tend to get overly concerned with some of the statements companies might make regarding hot button issues whether on one side of the fence (Chick-fil-a) or the other (Starbucks). To be honest I applaud their willingness to take a stand not always motivated by finances even if I disagree with where they are standing. What concerns me more is how they fare in treating the poor. At least, that is what I should be concerned about. All too often my wallet and my apathy end up taking the lead on how I am spending God’s money. So I am making an appeal for help. What resources are out there to help me make better, more informed choices? What are ways that I can walk in justice with my finances? I’m sure… at least I hope that I am not the only one wondering.
God, help me to remember that my finances, the money you have blessed me with is Yours. Help me to use it in ways that would honor You. Help me to remember that being a good steward is not about being cheap but spending justly. This is something that I haven’t thought and acted on nearly enough in my life and for that I am sorry. Help me to be more than sorry, Lord. Help me to repent. Help me to change.