For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me. (Matthew 25:35-36)
As Christians we’re called to do good, loving deeds.
I often hear of people who are constantly doing tons of loving things for Jesus. Then, an accusing voice tells me, “You could be visiting more sick people than you do…. And how can you even call yourself a Christian if you are not involved in a prison ministry?” It’s easy to start feeling insecure.
Where does that insecurity come from ?
Here’s the problem : If my focus is on comparing myself to others I will always either feel bad because I come up short compared to them or feel superior because I think I am doing better than they are. If my measure basically revolves around me, I am trapped…….I need a remedy !
Thankfully, Paul points the way towards a solution :
For through the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think more highly of himself than he ought to think; but to think so as to have sound judgment, as God has allotted to each a measure of faith. (Romans 12:3)
I think Paul’s advice helps us both to not think more highly of ourselves than we ought and also not to think more lowly of ourselves than we ought. For at the heart of this verse is getting rid of comparing ourselves to others.
So, in faith, our small group looked for ways to serve in our town. A couple of activities we tried weren’t quite a right fit. But some people in our group had gone each Christmas to sing carols and give out cookies at a local adult residential care home. So we began to wonder — how could we reach out to the residents during the rest of the year?
We started a monthly Bingo Night for them. Now, for years, they always look forward to our visits and enjoy the games and prizes. And I love joining them, not grudgingly or under compulsion, but propelled by faith and love.