Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me. Matthew 25:40
Barbecue chicken, green beans, spaghetti, rolls. On a cool day in October, at least fifty-four homeless people received this hot meal from a woman celebrating fifty-four years of life. The woman and her friends decided to forgo her usual birthday dinner in a restaurant, choosing instead to cook and serve meals to people on the streets of Chicago. On social media, she encouraged others to also perform a random act of kindness as a birthday gift.
This story reminds me of Jesus’ words in Matthew 25: “Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me” (v. 40). He said these words after declaring that His sheep will be invited into His eternal kingdom to receive their inheritance (vv. 33–34). At that time, Jesus will acknowledge that they’re the people who fed and clothed Him because of their genuine faith in Him, unlike the proud religious people who did not believe in Him (see 26:3–5). Although the “righteous” will question when they fed and clothed Jesus (25:37), He’ll assure them that what they did for others was also done for Him (v. 40).
Feeding the hungry is just one way God helps us care for His people—showing our love for Him and relationship with Him. May He help us meet others’ needs today.
What acts of kindness can you do today to show God’s love to others? How are you also caring for Him when you help meet their needs?
Gracious God, please help me to show Your love through my actions today.
For further study, read Loving the Neighbor Next Door.
Matthew describes a life of service devoted to the “least of these” who are “brothers and sisters of mine” (Matthew 25:40). The idea of serving those in need being a way of serving God indirectly is also captured in Proverbs 19:17, which says, “Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will reward them for what they have done.”
Since elsewhere in Matthew, Jesus’ “family” is defined as those who do “the will of my Father in heaven” (12:50), Matthew here seems focused primarily on the treatment of believers in Jesus who were vulnerable and in need due to taking great risks in service to Him. Since Jesus was sending His followers to do dangerous work on behalf of His kingdom, His words here would have assured them that He was with them in their struggles.