A Closer Look

Read Matthew 25: 31-46 The Judgment of the Nations

Bear one another's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ. Galatians 6: 2 (NRSV)

George Hilliard is from Virginia. Twice a year his church picks up trash along two miles of roadway. They divide into groups and start at each end, working until they meet each other.

George remembers the first time they went out. George was scanning the sides of the roads while riding to their starting point. Upon they arrival, he made the statement, "This shouldn't take long; there's not much trash along this section." They gathered up their bags and equipment and started out. About two minutes into picking up trash, George changed his mind. What he could not see riding by at 25 mph, he could see now that he was slowly walking. Where did all these pieces of plastic, foam, paper, and glass come from?

It then occurred to him that this same problem of perspective applies to other aspects of his life. How many people does he come in contact with each day at church, at the store, the bank, or at work, only to say, "How are you?" and barely wait to hear the response, "Fine and you?" If George is so busy with his own life that he quickly passes others by, he may be missing an opportunity to bear someone else's burden. it could be as simple as a word of encouragement, a listening ear, a prayer. When George slows down enough to hear or see the struggle in another's life, He can "Fulfill the law of Christ."

How about you and me? Do we need to slow down enough to take note of the needs around us? In this season of Lent, it might be one of the goals - to be more mindful of the needs of those around us.

Prayer; Heavenly father, help us to see those around us who need lifting up, in Jesus' name, we pray, amen.

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