When No One Notices, God Does!
37 “Then those who are righteous will reply to him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you a drink? 38 When did we see you as a stranger and welcome you, or naked and give you clothes to wear? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and visit you? ’40 “Then the king will reply to them, ‘I assure you that when you have done it for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you have done it for me.’ Matthew 25:37-40
What is noticeable in this exchange is the reaction of the righteous when Jesus points out their good deeds. They appear utterly unaware of their behavior. Motivated by God’s love, Christians do things every day that go unnoticed. It is the nature of the righteous. It is the nature of God’s workers to serve in relative obscurity with little thanks or recognition, not giving much thought to the sacrifices they make. Would having an end-of-year celebration for volunteers, staff, and other tireless workers be nice? By all means! However, they will serve not for the promise of a party or the recognition but because they love their God and His people. Service flows naturally out of the love of God that is welling up inside us. Servants are surprised and thankful when it gets attention. It is about the privilege Christians have been given to serve a unique and awesome God.
I often shared with my staff, even though you do not hear this often, “Thank you for your service.” We also discussed the reality that God knows. It might be nice if others recognized their work, but whether anybody in the church ever notices all the hard work and effort they put into their ministry, their contributions were essential to our congregation’s mission. In the end, God sees.
The righteous are taken aback when Jesus acknowledges their service. “‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you a drink? When did we see you as a stranger and welcome you, or naked and give you clothes to wear? When did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?'”
This verse comes to life when we care for someone in need. This could be someone God has placed in our midst. As believers without thinking, we often love, show concern, and serve. Our Lord’s response in Matthew 25 is our response as a loving neighbor, “Then the king will reply to them, ‘I assure you that when you have done it for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you have done it for me.'”
Jesus has a word of thanks and encouragement for you today from Matthew 25:21, “His master replied, ‘Excellent! You are a good and faithful servant! You’ve been faithful over a little. I’ll put you in charge of much. Come, celebrate with me.'” Blessings to you and to those who serve!