The Birdbath

My brothers and sisters, do you with your acts of favoritism really believe in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ? For if a person with gold rings and in fine clothes comes into your assembly, and if a poor person in dirty clothes also comes in, and if you take notice of the one wearing the fine clothes and say, "Have a seat here, please," while to the one who is poor you say, "Stand there," or, "Sit at my feet," have you not made distinctions among yourselves, and become judges with evil thoughts? Listen, my beloved brothers and sisters. Has not God chosen the poor in the world to be rich in faith and to be heirs of the kingdom that he has promised to those who love him? But you have dishonored the poor. Is it not the rich who oppress you? Is it not they who blaspheme the excellent name that was invoked over you?

You do well if you really fulfill the royal law according to the scripture. "You shall love your neighbor as yourself."

James 2: 1-8 (NRSV)

When Phyllis A. Edwards, from North Carolina, was 54 years old, she moved back home with her mother and sister. She was especially found of robins.

One day she saw crows taking over the birdbath. She chased them away because she wanted only the robins to enjoy it. After several tries, the crows eventually gave up. About a week later, Phyllis saw a number of crows enjoying the water in their neighbor's backyard - water that was coming from an air conditioner. At that moment Phyllis felt ashamed for not letting them enjoy the birdbath. after all, the crows had needs just like the other birds, and they deserved to have their needs met.

Later, Phyllis wondered, Is that how we treat some people? God respects no one person over another. If we are Christ-followers, neither should we. Phyllis hopes that this experience will help her remember to treat all people the same, no matter what race, religion, or nationality. We are all God's creation and need God's help. Likewise, God wants us to join in meeting the needs of all God's people, wherever we may find them.

Prayer: Our heavenly Father, when we interact with others, help us to remember that we are all your creation. Help us all to love one another as you have loved us, in Jesus' name. Amen

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