This is the devotional from the Upperroom for Wednesday, 8-22-12.
The king will answer them, “Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.”
- Matthew 25:40 (NRSV)
“While driving home from Philadelphia, my wife and I stopped at a red light before crossing the bridge into southern New Jersey. At the light was a poor man wearing rosaries and carrying a bucket of soapy water and a squeegee. He started to wash the car’s front window. I yelled at him to stop and told him that I would not pay him for his labor. The poor man explained that he had to work to eat; if I did not want to pay him, that was between God and me.
My wife pulled out a dollar and gave it to him when he finished his job and the light turned green. My wife was shocked by my behavior and said that turning down someone in need was not like me. She then recited Matthew 25:40. I was speechless; I knew she was right and that I had sinned.
As we pulled into our driveway at home, I realized that I am blessed and that others need help from those more fortunate. Since this incident, I have been more generous toward those in need. I hope and pray that I am never so close-fisted again.”
I had read this devotional for the day at home and had left to go to the Chiropractor. While I was pulling up into the parking space I noticed a man walking across the parking lot watching me pull into the parking lot. Sure enough as soon as I parked he was standing at my window looking like he wanted to ask me something. I put down the window a little ways and he began his spiel about needing some money to get something to eat. I think he was just asking for a quarter or so and I knew he was not getting something to eat for a quarter. The reminder in the devotional fresh on my mind had me digging in my wallett for a few dollars. God works in mysterious ways and this was one of them. I have noticed lately that my heart was hardening towards those who panhandle at convenience stores. I have not walked a “mile in their shoes” so the devotional reminded me that it is not for me to judge but for me to give to those who are in need.
Then I looked at all the bugs on my windshield and he was gone. Oh well, at least God knows his needs and mine!!!