2007-10-18 - The Least of These
Christ has called us through His deep compassion to care for those who lack even the simple things in life. He left for us an example. We are first to be like Jesus, we are to help the weaker and teach them to do the same as they grow and change. Jesus said in John 13:15, "For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you. Again in Matthew 25:40 he said, "Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me."
Who are "the least of these?" They are those who have so little, spiritually, physically and emotionally. They are the hungry, thirsty, unclothed, jobless, and sick and it goes on and on. It can seem so overwhelming when you don't know where your next meal for your family will come from. It can be so devastating to be laid off after 40 years of service and to find they will not be awarding pensions, even though you paid into it all those years. And, where are you going to find a good job at your age? I can only imagine how humiliating it must be to stand on the side of a road bearing a sign that reads, "Homeless, will work for food." Yet everyone ignores your sign, jibes you and now you even have the threat you will be beaten up or worse.
These are they! These are the least. Each time God leads us on the path wherein we turn a deaf ear or a blind eye to those all around us who are hurting, we should bow our heads in shame. God has called each of us to several specific callings before he died on Calvary. I find he has called us first to share Christ with those who do not know Him. We are commanded in Matthew 28:19,20, "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." We, as Christians should take this command and work as if Christ will return in the next hour. There are so many different ways we can reach out to a sick and dying world. There are a couple of ways my husband and I reach out to the homeless. One of those ways is if we see someone who is homeless, we go to the nearest sandwich shop and buy them a sandwich, drink and also give them a New Testament with Psalms. We will also pass out New Testaments with Psalms when we see someone destitute on a street corner and a couple of dollars for a sandwich.
Most feel you shouldn't give a homeless or vagrant money for they may spend it on alcohol or drugs. One thing I have learned over the past 26 years that I have been serving Christ is to do what God asks me to do. For me to anything less is disobedience. And, as for obedience, God is pleased when we are obedient. In 2 Corinthians 7:15 it states, "And his affections are greater for you as he remembers the obedience of you all."
I encourage you to take on the compassion of Christ and care for the least among many who are in the pit of despair. There are many reasons they find themselves in the pit, (e.g., drugs, alcohol, lust, gambling, etc. and etc.). It is easy to stand up and point our finger and cast judgment on them. However, how much nobler is the one who picks his neighbor up from the ground, dusts him off and sets him on higher ground and in alignment with the One who died for his sins. How much better for Him to know and believe that Christ died to get Him out of that pit. Please, next time you see a homeless or less fortunate, look beyond the worlds view and prejudices and see them through Christ's eyes. Your reward will be an eternal one with the Father.