They came from all over. Some people drove for several hours in order to gather together to help people they had never met and in all probability, never will. The people who came were the rich, the poor, the educated and those who had received little if any formal education. They came from diverse cultures and in some cases there was even a language barrier. If you were to have a theological discussion with them, some lively if not hostile hostile debates would probably erupt but for they did not gather today to debate. They came together for one purpose and that was to let people who were suffering know that someone cared that they were hungry, sick and dying and they wanted to help.
As of this writing, nearly three million meals have been packed this past weekend and more will be packed through Monday. These meals are destined for Somalia.
Eight weeks ago, a Christian organization dedicated to providing food to people in crisis, was approached by leaders of the Somalian community in the Twin Cities which is by the way, the largest community of Somalians outside of Somalia. These leaders shared personal stories about the horror their family and friends are experiencing in Somalia as famine grips the land. What was their response? They quickly went into action and organized a four day "mobile pack" and over the past three days, thousands of volunteers have packed nearly three million meals. The shift my husband and I attended packed two containers of food packets in two hours.
We love to preach/teach the Word of God but do we put it into action when it comes to meeting the practical needs of people? Do we genuinely love people or do we merely love to hear ourselves talk?
How easy it is for us to forget what Jesus said in Matthew chapter 7:
“Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.
For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink,
I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.’
“They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’
“He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’
“Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.”
Matthew 25:41-46 (NIV)
We can say the right words but without love...
Is your life the proof of His love?
Scripture quotation taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
Photo credit: PandaliaYUE
*Update: Nearly five million meals were packed by thousands of volunteers in four days. That might sound like a lot but it is estimated that death by starvation is imminent for 6.5 million Somalians unless they receive help and millions are in danger of joining that number as time goes on.
Yes, we are to proclaim the Gospel but we must remember that Jesus not only preached the Word of God, He also fed the hungry, healed the sick and loved the lonely and outcast. We must do the same.