The crowds asked him, “What then should we do?” He answered, “Whoever has two shirts must share with the one who has none, and whoever has food must do the same.” –Luke 3:10, 11
Jesus is coming on the scene, and his friend John is helping prepare for his arrival. John gets the crowd ready with a rousing speech about being ready to change your life completely and not just make a little tweak here and there yet go on as normal. People ask for a specific example from John, so he tells them: give away whatever extra you have. This is what you have to do to be ready to follow Jesus.
Last year our church offered a four-week money management class at the Boys and Girls Club. We were praying that we would reach families who were in need of encouragement and resources to get unburdened from financial struggle. Over 30 brave people came to our first session, brought their kids, and took their finances by the horns! What a thing to witness!
We gave out goody bags to the participants with a few items in them from area organizations, including a coffee mug from our church. Several of our participants are transitioning out of homelessness into having homes. One woman told me she had just moved into her new apartment. She was so excited to get a new beginning. When I handed the goody bag to her, she exclaimed, “And now I have a mug!” It took me a minute to realize what she was saying. This was her first mug, for her new home. “Would you like another one?” I asked, thinking of the dozens of coffee mugs cluttering our church cabinets. Not to mention my home cabinets. “Yes,” she replied, “Now I can have a friend over for tea! Thank you so much!”
I am wondering if following Jesus really is as simple as this: figuring out what I have too much of, and giving it away. Nah, it can’t be that simple. . .that would be utterly life-changing!
Pray: Lord, show me what I have, so I can give it away to bless others. Amen.