The parable of the Sheep and Goats has always been one of my favorites. It addresses the nations – all of us. It is in our relationship with others, our mindset, that the difference is seen. Those who pleased the Lord were doing it unconsciously. It was normal to them to see and address the needs of others around them.
In C.S. Lewis’, The Great Divorce, there is this woman that is being greatly celebrated in heaven. The questioner asked, “who is she?” thinking that she must be someone important. She was no one of great distinction, but one who gave of herself to others. I have had so many of these people in my life. They are the ones that show up with the soup when you are sick, sit on the bench with you when you are in despair, plunge in and help when your family is in crisis. So many of them in my life and if you look in yours as well. The thing is, they don’t recognize that they are doing anything out of the ordinary.
There are so many folk stories and legends down through the centuries of people doing for others without realizing that they were loving like Jesus as they served him unaware. It always comes back to that, you see. It is in our caring about others and God’s creation that we love like Jesus.
My thanksgivings this Lent is in recognizing Jesus in the acts of others. It is sometimes no more than a smile, pulling a weed, or listening to a child. All small acts, but they change lives.
Go forth to love and serve the Lord. You may think you are not doing anything, but God does.