“Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.” (Matthew 25:40)
Katie walked toward the back of the lunch room to sit with her friend Julie. Katie and Julie were best friends, and they always did everything together. The other kids in their class even called them “The Twins.”
As she walked to sit by Julie, Katie saw a girl sitting one at a table near the wall. It was Lucy, the new girl. Lucy was quiet, she smelled a little funny, her clothes looked old and worn-out, and she did not have any friends yet. Katie paused for a moment, but then hurried to her usual table without giving Lucy another glance.
Later that afternoon, Katie’s teacher taught a Bible lesson. “Does anyone know who ‘the least of these’ are?” Mrs. Johnson asked the class. The students shook their heads. “Jesus gives some examples of these people in Matthew chapter 25,” she said. “He calls people who are hungry, poor, or lonely ‘the least of these’ because they’re the ones that most people think the least about.”
Katie peeked over at Lucy. She was looking down at her desk. Mrs. Johnson continued, “Jesus told the crowds that He would reward those who help these people, and punish those who are too selfish to help. We have many chances to be kind to people everyday,” she said, “and Jesus will reward you for your kindness.”
The next day at lunch, Katie saw Lucy sitting alone again. Katie slowed down. “Dear Lord,” she prayed, “help me to be kind to Lucy and ‘the least of these.’” She walked up to Lucy and smiled.
“Hi! I’m Katie. Do you want to eat lunch with my friend Julie and me?”
Lucy smiled back. “I’m Lucy,” she said, “and I’d love to eat with you.”
She seems so nice, Katie thought. Lucy had seemed so glad about Katie’s offer, but Katie felt like she’d gotten more of a blessing out of it than Lucy had. It would be a little strange having a new friend hanging out with “The Twins.” But would that be so bad? Katie wondered. Maybe they would just have to be known as “The Triplets” from now on.
In Matthew chapter 25, Jesus describes “the least of these” as the kinds of people we see everyday. He says that when we do kind things to them, it is as though we are doing it to Christ Himself. Jesus promises to bless us if we are kind to His people. We have no excuse for ignoring people who are different. After all, Jesus loved us when we were most unlovable, and Jesus still loves us even though we have nothing unique to offer Him.
Jesus blesses those who help “the least of these.”
» Do I know any “least of these” people?
» What can I do to be kind to them today?
» In what ways am I myself a “least of these” person?
» Would Jesus ever ignore me because I was undeserving of His love?