I met Jesus the other day.
Not in some “near death experience, maybe I dreamed this, maybe it’s not real” kind of way. I mean I sat down and talked to Him. He told me His story. I prayed for Him, and He prayed for me. We shared a meal together.
It was great.
Jesus was living under a bridge downtown. He stopped by a resource center called SafeHouse to join us for lunch and to get out of the heat.
He was tired. He hadn’t been getting much sleep. He had been beaten up a time or two. He had been spit on, and yelled at, and had His stuff stolen. He was definitely going through a tough time.
I gave Him a sandwich and we talked for a while.
When He finished, He got up, thanked me for the meal, and left.
I assume Jesus is hanging out near the same spot right now.
Please understand that this isn’t some play on words. I didn’t meet a Hispanic man that happened to share the same name as the Lord. And this isn’t some metaphor.
This is just what happens when we take Matthew25 seriously.
That’s where Jesus tells us that whenever we do something for the least of these, we do it for Him.
I love that it doesn’t say, “it’s like” we’re doing it for Him. And it doesn’t say, “it’s as if” we’re doing it for Him.
It says that in that moment, when we’re helping someone else—when we’re loving and serving someone struggling through a hard time—that we are literally doing it for Jesus.
Often times, Jesus doesn’t look like we expect Him to. He rarely fits the stereotype we have in our heads. But I assure you, He is all around us. Truthfully, we see Him daily in the faces of the poor and marginalized.
But how do we treat Him?
I think it’s time for us to take Matthew 25:31-46 more seriously. It’s not some good moral teaching. It’s the absolute truth with eternal implications.