Gospel MT 25:31-46
Jesus said to his disciples:
“When the Son of Man comes in his glory,
and all the angels with him,
he will sit upon his glorious throne,
and all the nations will be assembled before him.
And he will separate them one from another,
as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats.
He will place the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.
Then the king will say to those on his right,
‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father.
Inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.
For I was hungry and you gave me food,
I was thirsty and you gave me drink,
a stranger and you welcomed me,
naked and you clothed me,
ill and you cared for me,
Then the righteous will answer him and say,
‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you,
or thirsty and give you drink?
When did we see you a stranger and welcome you,
or naked and clothe you?
When did we see you ill or in prison, and visit you?’
And the king will say to them in reply,
‘Amen, I say to you, whatever you did
for one of these least brothers of mine, you did for me.’
Then he will say to those on his left,
‘Depart from me, you accursed,
into the eternal fire prepared for the Devil and his angels.
For I was hungry and you gave me no food,
I was thirsty and you gave me no drink,
a stranger and you gave me no welcome,
naked and you gave me no clothing,
ill and in prison, and you did not care for me.’
Then they will answer and say,
‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty
or a stranger or naked or ill or in prison,
and not minister to your needs?’
He will answer them, ‘Amen, I say to you,
what you did not do for one of these least ones,
you did not do for me.’
And these will go off to eternal punishment,
but the righteous to eternal life.”
God is deeply touched by our simple acts of kindness for those in need. The giving of food, drink, a warm welcome, a coat, a visit to a sick or imprisoned person.
Why is God so pleased when we give the everyday necessities of life to the most needy of His children?
As parents, we need only to look inward to know the answer: Because we are never more grateful than when someone helps one of our children.
The givers, the “sheep,” in today’s parable have no ulterior motives for their acts of kindness.
When Jesus says they are blessed for having done these things for Him, they are clearly puzzled and ask when they did these things for him?
The givers were not looking for recognition or reward from Heaven. Their kindness and generosity were motivated solely by their compassion and concern for the person in need.
If I hope to be counted among the sheep, the most valuable gift I have to give is my time.
There is an old saying, “I am so busy taking care of the important things that I am forgetting the things that are critical.”
God is not impressed with our great personal accomplishments or awards.
But, He is deeply touched by our “making the time” to perform simple acts of kindness for the most vulnerable of His children.
“Amen, I say to you, whatever you did for one of these
least brothers or sisters of mine, you did for me.”
Gospel MT 25:31-46