“I can’t say thank you enough. I’m still learning to get used to people being kind to me. I’m looking at my cooker and I’m in tears. I didn’t expect this kindness. God bless you. Thank you.” This was a text sent by a lady who had simply turned up at church with her children. She was fleeing from a Domestic Violence situation and had absolutely nothing.
Where was Jesus in this scenario? Was Jesus in the gift of the cooker given by the Church? Or was Jesus with the woman receiving the gift?
“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 v 37-40)
There are members within Christ’s family who are hungry, thirsty, seen as a stranger, in need, sick and even in prison; they have less; they are overlooked and perhaps ignored; they are the least; but Jesus is with them and in them, so much so that it can be said that Jesus is one with them.
When we refuse to turn a deaf ear to the cries of the Christian family wherever they might be in the world then we are far more open to hear the voice of God. When we stand with our black brothers and sisters who have been subject to all kinds of mistreatment from unequal opportunity/justice to outright racism then we have perhaps come closest to standing in the presence of God than ever before. When we stop looking down on the ‘least’ as poor, second-class, high-maintenance people who bring the best out of us and see them as family then we are far more likely to begin to have visions of Christ.
It maybe Jesus who needs a cooker!