20th FEBRUARY

Matthew 25: 31 - 46

“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 invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me. ”

I have a friend who has done the advanced driver training in the police and the motto “Semper Vigilo” (always vigilant) is certainly one that he takes to heart.  He’s not only aware of what is directly in front of him or behind him but also what is ahead of him and all around him.  He can look ahead and read the signs.  How often do we drive as though on auto-pilot?  How often do we journey through life on auto-pilot?  We might know where we are going or where we want to go but we might not be really aware of what is happening around us.

Seeing the world through God’s eyes extends our vision of the world and its people.  It also allows us to see what we miss in the all too often busyness of life - those not just faraway who are suffering but also those on our very doorstep.  Yesterday’s reflection focused on acknowledging needs around us and touched on the importance of the practical. This great Parable of the Sheep and the Goats is great because it reminds us of the greatness of God’s love in where Jesus is to be found and the greatness of the challenge presented to us sending us out into the life of the world to follow his example.

Vigilance in the context of what the police do, looking out for others, should always lead to positive action which is also the case in the life of the faith.  Faith doesn’t not come from what we do and how we do it but is authenticated by it.  Although daunting and challenging the call to act in the ways that Jesus encourages us to act in bringing relief to those in need is an invitation to do it because we want to do it.  

We love as God has loved us in the sending of his son.  We serve as God serves us in the suffering servant who is Christ. We give as God has given everything to us in his word to us and his living word with us.  We reach out as God has reached out to us in Christ’s arms stretched out on the cross.  We move out as God moved out and into the world he has created.

What does it mean to you to look at the world through the eyes of God?  Where have you seen Christ in the needs of others?  What difference can you make?

Loving Lord, we love because you loved us first.

Help us to learn how to love as you love . . .

to give as  you give . . .

to serve as you serve . . .

that this world might be a better place for all.

In the name of Jesus.  

AMEN.