Thursday, January 12, 2023

Word and Prayer, Matthew 9:18-38

“Then Jesus made a circuit of all the towns and villages. He taught in their meeting places, reported kingdom news, and healed their diseased bodies, healed their bruised and hurt lives. When he looked out over the crowds, his heart broke. So confused and aimless they were, like sheep with no shepherd. “What a huge harvest!” he said to his disciples. “How few workers! On your knees and pray for harvest hands!”" Matthew‬ ‭9‬:‭35‬-‭38‬ ‭MSG‬‬
It’s not hard to tell who is hurting. When looking around in any crowded place it’s easy to see who is in physical pain, who is emotionally distraught, who needs a hug or a tissue.
Jesus was in the habit of reading the crowds, and he could tell who needed a healing touch even easier than we can today. He also knew the needs were many and the workers were few. There continues to be a need for workers yet even today, both in vocational missions and as professionals in the medical and dental fields bring healing and relief in Jesus’s name, and non-professional people who can just serve those who need help.
Of course we can “serve those who need help” right where we are…sharing a meal with neighbors, mowing a lawn or shoveling a walkway, sitting and sharing a cup of tea with someone who might need a friend. With the pandemic these past few years, people are lonelier than ever, and many folks could just use a friend. By being the hands and feet of Jesus, and weaving Jesus into our conversation, can be a great fellowship or witness.
Of course, some people want to be left alone…so let’s respect personal boundaries and pray for discernment.

My Prayer
Lord, thank You for calling “every tongue, tribe, and nation” to follow you. Thank You for placing believers around the world, that we can reach our neighbors here, near, and far away by being Your hands and feet and serving You by serving others. Keep our hearts aligned with Yours, that we would desire to see Your Kingdom grow, so that we can be joined with you as You have planned. In Jesus name. Amen.

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