We can follow God’s example
Christmas is a time in the Christian faith when we are prompted to think of others and to help those in need. Jesus was born on Christmas Day. It was a time when God thought, not primarily of himself, but of the world he had created: how could he best set the world on its path to its true destination?
The world in darkness lay. Soon a light would shine. The infant Jesus would be born in a stable in Bethlehem. He was born to save and to redeem the world. It was an enormous undertaking, even for a boy king. But it was a venture of immense proportions for the sake of humankind. With the coming of Jesus, the success of the task would be guaranteed. Many would savour the life from God. God’s love for his creation would be seen.
Just as God acted to bring life and light to the world, so you and I are called to help others. This would be emphasised in the teachings and exhortations of Jesus throughout his public ministry. Constantly, Jesus pointed people away from himself and towards others.
This was particularly the case when Jesus spoke about helping others recorded in St Matthew, chapter 25. There the Son of Man comes in his glory and sits on his glorious throne. Before him are gathered all the nations and he separates them one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. He places the sheep at his right hand and the goats at his left.
He says to the sheep on his right hand: “Come, O blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food, thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, sick and you visited me, in prison and you came to me.”
The righteous ask, “When did we do all these things?” And the King answers: “As you did it to the least of these my brethren, you did it to me.”
At Christmas and Advent, we remember again that God loved his world so much that he sent his Son on a rescue mission 2000 years ago.
Jesus came as God’s gift. We also remember again that you and I are called to help all who are in need. As we do so, we will see the face of Jesus.