LOVING THOSE WHOM WE ARE CALLED TO LOVE

Reblogging a post from the Daily Devotional date 15 February 2016 published by the Living Church under the direction of the Reverend Emily Hylden.

Consecrated to Christ • Fr. Lawrence Lew, OP/Flickr
Being a Disciple
Daily Devotional • February 15
By Lucas Crossland
I live in a bubble named Sewanee. It’s a wonderful place, but it’s surrounded by a very impoverished part of Tennessee. The university helps the surrounding area, of course, but because it is so idealistic we can easily forget about the poverty and problems around us. Being that most of the population of Sewanee is students, other things often cloud our minds, not least academic work. It’s important to keep in mind, though, that being a disciple of Jesus calls us out of our daily lives, into preaching the Gospel with our actions.

Being part of a community calls us to thinking and acting first for others, placing their needs and comforts above our own. Being a disciple is about disciplining ourselves to truly follow Jesus, even when it interrupts our daily lives, even when it makes us uncomfortable; it is through our suffering that will also share in Jesus’ resurrection at Easter.

The Gospel reading today is about realizing that ignoring the poor and needy has enormous, eternal effects on ourselves and on the communities in which we live.

May we examine ourselves and change our lives so that God may “mercifully increase in us gifts of holy discipline, in almsgiving, prayer, and fasting” in order that “our lives may be directed to the fulfilling of God’s most gracious will.”

Matthew 25:31-46

“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on the throne of his glory. 32All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats, 33and he will put the sheep at his right hand and the goats at the left. 34Then the king will say to those at his right hand, ‘Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; 35for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, 36I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.’ 37Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink? 38And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing? 39And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?’ 40And the king will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.’ 41Then he will say to those at his left hand, ‘You that are accursed, depart from me into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels; 42for I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not give me clothing, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.’ 44Then they also will answer, ‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not take care of you?’ 45Then he will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’ 46And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”

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