James 2:14-18 - The Message Bible - (Gospel from last week that I wanted to write on.)
14-17Dear friends, do you think you'll get anywhere in this if you learn all the right words but never do anything? Does merely talking about faith indicate that a person really has it? For instance, you come upon an old friend dressed in rags and half-starved and say, "Good morning, friend! Be clothed in Christ! Be filled with the Holy Spirit!" and walk off without providing so much as a coat or a cup of soup—where does that get you? Isn't it obvious that God-talk without God-acts is outrageous nonsense?
18I can already hear one of you agreeing by saying, "Sounds good. You take care of the faith department, I'll handle the works department." Not so fast. You can no more show me your works apart from your faith than I can show you my faith apart from my works. Faith and works, works and faith, fit together hand in glove.
Goes along with the next passages from Matthew 25:31-46:
31-33"When he finally arrives, blazing in beauty and all his angels with him, the Son of Man will take his place on his glorious throne. Then all the nations will be arranged before him and he will sort the people out, much as a shepherd sorts out sheep and goats, putting sheep to his right and goats to his left.
34-36"Then the King will say to those on his right, 'Enter, you who are blessed by my Father! Take what's coming to you in this kingdom. It's been ready for you since the world's foundation. And here's why:
I was hungry and you fed me, I was thirsty and you gave me a drink, I was homeless and you gave me a room, I was shivering and you gave me clothes, I was sick and you stopped to visit, I was in prison and you came to me.'
37-40"Then those 'sheep' are going to say, 'Master, what are you talking about? When did we ever see you hungry and feed you, thirsty and give you a drink? And when did we ever see you sick or in prison and come to you?' Then the King will say, 'I'm telling the solemn truth: Whenever you did one of these things to someone overlooked or ignored, that was me—you did it to me.'
41-43"Then he will turn to the 'goats,' the ones on his left, and say, 'Get out, worthless goats! You're good for nothing but the fires of hell. And why? Because—
I was hungry and you gave me no meal, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, I was homeless and you gave me no bed, I was shivering and you gave me no clothes, Sick and in prison, and you never visited.'
44"Then those 'goats' are going to say, 'Master, what are you talking about? When did we ever see you hungry or thirsty or homeless or shivering or sick or in prison and didn't help?' 45"He will answer them, 'I'm telling the solemn truth: Whenever you failed to do one of these things to someone who was being overlooked or ignored, that was me—you failed to do it to me.' 46"Then those 'goats' will be herded to their eternal doom, but the 'sheep' to their eternal reward."
Well, those passages say it all. I think that loving others has to extend beyond your own walls or your church walls, as neglect of family or friends and only taking care of your inner circle is no gospel to me and definately not Jesus' idea either. There are people at every turn; those you work with, laugh with, drive with, go to school with, that also need you and in case you don't have any family around anymore too. I can tell you that it's very lonely being away from family when they need you the most and feeling helpless when you can't get to them and have to rely on other people that are wonderful enough to be with them in your place.
I have been especially thinking about elderly people that can't go out into the sunlight or feel fresh air, walk on their own, dress themselves or even eat or take a bath on their own. Their whole lives, those they love, and their homes are basically snatched away from them maybe suddenly or not and we take for granted everything we are free to do every day while we are young. Maybe they have no one to visit or cook or clean for them, visit them or phone them, take care of them or love them. And everyone in today's society has become non-attentive and rushed with regards to them, because they just don't know what it feels like or just don't care at all. I see it in some nurses that are truly compassionate and treat them like they are their own family and in others that are mean and treat them like they are a job or stupid non-humans. Same with frustrating doctors or wonderful ones that treat people they are people.
I am glad to be here with my father who was all by himself at home, and my mother who is almost out of convalescent care . I see their faces and hear their voices when they see someone they love come to visit or hear a voice on the phone and the pain when they really want to hear from someone and they don't. I am glad that I chose them over my job, no doubt about it! I only have one mother and father and some people don't even have that. It is hard though as the youngest of the family to see everyone else get old or pass away and not have been able to have the many number of years with them as other people had.
But, I have to count my blessings more often.
Ending with a cool story I found online:
Priest helps with foreclosures...