For I was hungry and you gave Me food, I was thirsty and you gave Me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed Me, I was naked and you gave Me clothing, I was sick and you took care of Me, I was in prison and you visited Me. Matthew 25:35–36
The Bible indicates that our lives will be evaluated. Most of us don’t like the thought of having our lives judged, but according to Jesus, our reluctance will not stay the evaluative process. The good news is that the standards that we will be judged against are very manageable. We will not be judged based on what we believe or what church we go to or how often we read the Bible. Our lives will simply be evaluated on what we do to and for the people our world often chooses to disregard. Did we feed the hungry? Did we offer a drink to the thirsty? Were we welcoming to people we did not know? Did we visit the sick and the incarcerated? Did we take time to be with the people Jesus came into the world to love?
Unfortunately, the answers to these questions may be “no.” The sick, the hungry, the lonely, the criminal element in our society are those we often choose to shy away from. However, they tend to be the people who are most readily available for relationship. Jesus sets the bar of evaluation low. All we need to do is take an interest in the people whom the world couldn’t care less about . . . meaning the people most ready to accept our company. According to Jesus, the bar is low, but the stakes are high.
Do you take time to be with the poor?
Lord, homeless people are all around me when I make my way to work. The hungry and thirsty are always ready to accept assistance. Those suffering illness and incarceration want nothing more than a friendly visit. Why am I such an infrequent companion to those You call me to serve? Help me to get my priorities straight so that Your desires might be mine and Your evaluation of my life might be pleasing to both of us. For this I pray, in Your name. AMEN.