Jesus said, "When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on the throne of his glory. All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats, and he will put the sheep at his right hand and the goats at the left. Then the king will say to those at his right hand, `Come, you that 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 something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.' Then the righteous will answer him, `Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink? And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing? And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?' And the king will answer them, `Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.' Then he will say to those at his left hand, `You that are accursed, depart from me 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 nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not give me clothing, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.' Then they also will answer, `Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not take care of you?' Then he will answer them, `Truly I tell you, just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.' And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life." Matthew 25:31-46
The long season of ordinary time has come to an end. We will start Advent this coming week. Life changes dramatically and the church and the world turns to await the coming of the Christ child. As we begin this new season, we are reminded of the glory of Christ which is found in our willingness to love and serve others.
There are those in this world who would have power and status. And there are those who win power and status through money, thinking themselves special and gifted because of their purchases. We are invited to know the true power in life which is found in kindness, tenderness, compassion and service. If we want to be close to God, we must be willing to draw close to the poor and imprisoned, the homeless, the lonely, the abandoned elderly. God is found in the darkest places, where no glamor or glitter is to be found. We are reminded out loud, during this holiday season to find God beyond the decorations, beyond the parties, and deep in the heart of need.
Today I ask God to help me move to the edges in my search for God. May we move to serve God by giving ourselves away and by seeing God in the least of our neighbors. May we stay away from the glamor and move towards the love.
Almighty and everlasting God, whose will it is to restore all things in your well¯beloved Son, the King of kings and Lord of lords: Mercifully grant that the peoples of the earth, divided and enslaved by sin, may be freed and brought together under his most gracious rule; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.