Sunday, May 22, 2011
May 22 (James 2:15-16)
If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, and one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit? (KJV)
This is part of the famous teaching on faith without works. It is so famous that perhaps it has suffered from the contempt that familiarity breeds. Christians are among the best at serving. We have outreach ministries at our churches, food pantries, and assistance programs. We collect clothing for children in foreign countries and we give of our time and money.
If we think that this has fulfilled the teaching of Scripture, however, we are mistaken. Pause for a moment and look at the people we often do not see, those closest to us. We may spend a Saturday at an inner-city home restoration, but what needs do our elderly neighbors and relatives have? We collect canned goods for the food pantry, but is there a co-worker going through hard times who could use a meal?
Of course we must not stop reaching out to those whose names we will never know. In doing so, we must not neglect those whose names we do.
Lord, it is so easy for me to get caught up in the fast pace of life that I fail to see those around me. Help me to see with the eyes of Jesus and to move quickly to serve anyone whose need would have caught His eye. Amen.
Copyright © 2011 by Steven R. Perkins