IT’S HOW COLD???
It was Tuesday morning at 5:20 AM. My husband was getting ready to walk out the door and he called out, “It’s 12 degrees!” What?! 12 degrees?? It’s November 18th! How can it be 12 degrees?! So, naturally when it was time to take the kids to school we all bundled up with coats and gloves and hats. I arrived at the church sometime later to find that I would be delivering coats to kids at a school in the Brightmoor neighborhood of Detroit. I was excited because I was going to get to serve, and because one of my best girlfriends was going with me.
When we arrived we began unloading about 200 coats from the vehicles we brought. We were directed to a classroom that is used as a clothing closet for the kids, and were incredibly blessed to have the opportunity to spend some time helping some Kindergarten children pick out coats.
As I was fitting little coats on little bodies and digging through a big box full of gloves and hats it began to dawn on me that these children had walked to school that morning without coats, hats and gloves. It was 12 degrees! I wouldn’t let my kids go from the house to the car without being bundled up. But many of these children walked, some as far as 2 miles, without protection from the cold. I literally had to hold my breath to keep myself from crying in front of those children.
Once back in the car with my friend I was free to express myself…only by that time the sadness had turned to anger. The drive had taken us 25 minutes from the church doors to the school doors. We had not boarded a plane and headed to a third world nation. We simply got into a mini van and drove down some main roads. Why are there children who are living daily with cold bodies and empty bellies only 25 minutes from us? And I’m no fool, I am well aware that there are likely children 30 seconds from our doors in the same situation.
This is where people from every place on the political spectrum usually begin to spout out opinions on what the government is or isn’t doing right to meet these needs. But listen, we need to face the truth here. Caring for those in need is not the responsibility of our government.
I could almost hear the collective *gasp*, but it’s not…really.
It is the responsibility of the church. And in case you haven’t noticed we have failed in grand, epic fashion. I don’t mean the church as in a building. I mean the church as in Christians around the world. God has clearly called us to meet the need, no questions asked, and we do not. I mean sure, there are some Christians who have given their lives to meeting needs and winning the lost. But if we are being truthful, most of us have not.
THIS MIGHT HURT
42 For I was hungry and you gave Me nothing to eat; I was thirsty and you gave Me nothing to drink; 43 I was a stranger and you didn’t take Me in; I was naked and you didn’t clothe Me, sick and in prison and you didn’t take care of Me.’ 44 “Then they too will answer, Lord, when did we see You hungry, or thirsty, or a stranger, or without clothes, or sick, or in prison, and not help You?’ 45 “Then He will answer them, I assure you: Whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for Me either.’ 46 “And they will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”
Yeah, ouch. I mean really, how have I walked this earth for 44 years and not really had a revelation of this?! If every Christian, every church body, did their part to feed, clothe, and provide for, the world would look very different today. This doesn’t have to be a heavy burden on any one person or any one church. It doesn’t even have to change the way we do church. It just has to change the way we give.
PULL BACK THE CURTAIN
I am so grateful that God has pulled back the curtain for the leadership of my church so we can see the need for the church as a whole to give and do. I am praying that God pulls back the curtain at every church and in every single life, so we can collectively meet the need.
Let our prayer today be, “Lord, I want to be the kind of person that meets the need, no questions asked.”