Wednesday, August 8, 2012

When's the Last Time You Ministered to Jesus?

A friend (KC) shared from her heart yesterday a story that literally moved me to tears. She told about being in a situation where she could have helped a person in need but chose rather to "lecture" them about their need and what they should do about it instead. Shortly thereafter, she was convicted about what she did and tried to find that person to help them but couldn't. The opportunity was gone.

First of all, I thank her for being willing and vulnerable enough to share her story. If we were honest with ourselves, we have all had situations like this in our lives one time or another. Secondly, I hope I haven't shared too much of her story because I know that she plans to write about it as well. :)

When confronted with people in need, I tend to fall back on my cultural and family upbringing understanding of poverty/need. I tend to think, "if you get your hair cut and get a job, you won't be in need." It has always worked for me. Why won't it work for everyone else? However, I would challenge us to think about those in need and those who ask help from us in a different perspective...

1. We really cannot fully understand another person's situation in life and all the things that went into them getting there. We can speculate, we can judge (from our perspective), and we can theorize about what caused their need, but since we're not them, we can not really grasp the full story.

2. God did not call us to judge the needs of others but rather to help those in need. Some will argue that we are to be "wise stewards" of our resources. I agree wholeheartedly and would argue that a part of being a wise steward would be to follow God's command and be open-handed to the poor.

3. The greatest thing we can give to those in need is not really our money but ourselves. I find this to be extremely uncomfortable because it is easy to give something and walk away. I can then feel good about myself but not be obligated too much to a long term commitment. I find it more difficult to stop, take time, listen and try to help find a more sustainable solution to the need of the person in question.

4. We cannot solve all the world's problems but we can decide to help with the ones that are close to us.

5. Remember that at anytime, you might be entertaining an angel. :)

6. Finally, from a Biblical standpoint, when we help those in need, we really are ministering to Christ. (Matthew 25:35-40)

So, when is the last time that you ministered to (or had a chance to minister to) Jesus Christ? "Wait a minute," you ask, "when did we have a chance to minister to Jesus?"

Jesus says...

"For I was hungry and you gave Me something to eat;
I was thirsty and you gave Me something to drink;
I was a stranger and you took Me in;
I was naked and you clothed Me;
I was sick and you took care of Me;
I was in prison and you visited Me."

"I assure you: Whatever you did for the least of these brothers of Mine, you did for Me." 


  1. God did not call us to judge the needs of others but rather to help those in need ...

    A powerful reminder of the need for constant vigilance over oneself in maintaining not only an open hand .. but an open heart as well. I have often wondered about being placed in certain situations where God is testing me to asses my response and my actions .. I know it seems crazy .. but I have wondered this many times ...

  2. Ian, thanks for your insights. I like the phrase, "maintaining not only an open hand...but an open heart as well." True, it is hard at times. I find so because of the sinful nature that creeps up in me and eggs me on to judge another person. And your comment about God testing? Not crazy. Maybe testing. Maybe giving an opportunity to grow. Why else on earth would He send angels unaware? Surely more for our benefit than theirs. :)