Investing In Others
"You are the light of the world. A city built on a hill cannot be hid. No one after lighting a lamp puts it under the bushel basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven." Matthew 5: 14-16 (NRSV)
Cletus L Hull III is from Pennsylvania. In his earliest ministry with the youth at a small church, he had to start from scratch with no resources. Although he had no idea what he was doing, Cletus also knew that God could use the youth at this church. He believed he could connect with them and be their pastor.
One day, God opened up his opportunities when he was invited to join a group of neighborhood boys who were playing football. Reluctantly, Cletus decided to play - but only because he knew that he needed to take part in their lives if they were ever going to consider anything he would say or do. Early on, the ball rolled right to Cletus. He picked it up and started running. After colliding with one of the boys, he stumbled into a makeshift end zone. Almost immediately, all these boys became a part of the youth ministry at the church.
Cletus's experiences in youth ministry taught him that if he wanted people to be interested in what he had to say, he first needed to be interested in what they said and did. He has applied this principle in all his ministry: The good news of Jesus spreads first by embracing the lives of others. This is what Cletus believes the incarnation of Jesus is truly all about.
We all need to feel needed, loved, and accepted. Sometimes it involves more time than we think we have, but time is the best investment in people that we have, especially our children. Remember that God always has time for us.
Prayer: Dear Lord Jesus, help us to reach into the lives of the people we meet every day to reflect to them the light of your love. Help us to be willing to give of our time, especially when we feel we don't have it, in Jesus' name, amen.