Serve the Community

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19

Hands-On Serving

by
Scott Benson

Ask God to speak as you interact with today's Scripture and devotional.

“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’ The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’” — Matthew 25:34-40

Jesus left no doubt about His deep compassion for the marginalized and the oppressed. His solidarity with “the least of these” was clearly communicated when He said that caring for one of them was as if they were caring for Jesus himself. He knew that His followers would not be comfortable with getting their hands dirty in serving those who were hungry, homeless, sick, incarcerated, and ignored. But the implications of His action verbs (“feeding, inviting, clothing, looking after, visiting”) demanded that they do more than merely provide financial assistance. He was challenging them to roll up their sleeves and get directly involved.

Next time we meet, we’ll be learning about our Friends’ initiatives in the areas of homelessness, at-risk youth/children in foster care, and human trafficking. Jon Egger and our Missions team will be providing opportunities for your life group to support one or more of those initiatives by participating in a Serve Experience. Your facilitator will share more details as to the various serving options that will be available. 

reflect

Answer the questions below and write down any other thoughts and prayers to God in your Life in Rhythm journal.

  1. Where do you see people disguised as Jesus? How have you responded to them?  
  2. How does knowing that serving “one of the least of these” is like caring for Jesus, change the way you might respond to someone in need this week?  
  3. Ask God to prepare you for the Serve Experience next week. Ask Him to open your heart as you learn more about our Missions initiatives. Ask Him how He might be calling you and your group to get more involved.

Go deeper (optional)

Every day you'll have an opportunity to "go deeper" into God's Word by practicing the REAP study method. Read the following scripture and use your journal and the REAP method to unpack the following scripture and apply it to your life.

Luke 14:12-14
Learn more about reap