Saturday, April 24, 2010

Feed the Hungry

I’ve said it. My kids have said it. You’ve probably said it too. “I’m starving!” Really? If you’re like me you’ve probably skipped fewer meals in your life than you have fingers on your hands. Most of us have never known true hunger, much less starvation. We’re definitely feeling hungry now. And that’s good because we’re going to feel a lot more compassion for the people we meet today who may only get one meal a day, maybe less. What you’re feeling right now, for some, is a normal, day in, day out feeling.
I bet you’re thinking “There’s a whole hungry world out there. I can’t feed them all.” (I’m sure you were thinking that, not how hungry you are!) Have you ever heard the story…
There was an old man walking on the beach one day at low tide. Another man watched from a distance as the old man bent down picked something up and threw it into the sea. As he got closer he discovered that the old man was tossing stranded starfish back into the sea so they would not die in the sun. The man called out to the old man, “You’re crazy! There are millions of starfish dying on the beach, you can’t save all of them! No matter how many you throw into the sea, it won’t make any difference, millions more will die.” The old man looked at the other man for a moment. Then he bent down and picked up a starfish and as he threw it back into the sea he said, “It made a difference to that one.”
Jesus said that loving others is the most important thing next to loving God himself. And not just loving your friends and family, but loving those who don’t love you back and those who can’t repay your kindness. That goes totally against our nature, doesn’t it? It’s just not normal.
It’s not normal for us, but it’s very normal for God. God is Love. Love is not just what He does, it’s who He is. When we love others, people we don’t know, people who don’t love us back, even our enemies, we are showing them the very nature of God. Think about these words, “For God so loved the world that He gave…” He gave to a world that doesn’t love Him. He gave to a world that can’t pay Him back.
When we show love to others, it is a form of worship. It tells God that we know who He is and that we want to be like Him. Maybe we can’t reach everyone with God’s love, but we can show God’s love to our neighbors. We can make a difference to someone.

Read Matthew 25:31-46
Were these people surprised by the way they were sorted? Why?
Why was it so important to the King?
What does this passage mean?
How can you apply it to your life today?