“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’”—Matthew 25:40, NIV
This year, we have witnessed tragic events around the world at a magnitude that we have not seen before—hurricanes, earthquakes, fires, floods, domestic violence, sex scandals, mass killings, drug overdose and opioid-involved deaths, and contentious political battles, to name a few. People affected by these tragedies will never be the same again as they face homelessness, grieve the loss of loved ones, care for injured family members, and the list goes on. We live in a world filled with many whose hearts are broken.
To say, “Our thoughts and prayers are with you,” is and will always be important, but as Christ’s ambassadors, we are called to do more. Knowing that God is love and He desires that as many people as possible would come to Him, we are presented with opportunities to “make today count” for Him. We need to let our light shine brightly in this broken world.
I will never forget the kindness extended to me and my daughter by the Atlantic Union Conference office staff many years ago. I began working at the office while in the midst of my own personal tragedies. One evening, during the holiday season, the staff filled the trunk of my car with food that would last for some time. God knew exactly what I needed at the time and He provided. We had a praise party when I arrived home! Over the years, God has blessed me to be able to return that kindness to others over and over again.
Many churches and their members, as well as schools and their students in the Atlantic Union territory, have moved to action and have become involved in reaching out to those impacted by the tragedies in the U.S. and the Caribbean islands. Departments in the Atlantic Union office and its six conferences have also been involved in assessing the needs and putting plans into action to make a difference in the lives of others. Ellen White, author and co-founder of the Adventist Church, wrote, “The work which the disciples did, we also are to do. Every Christian is to be a missionary. In sympathy and compassion we are to minister to those in need of help, seeking with unselfish earnestness to lighten the woes of suffering humanity”—Christian Service, p. 22.
During this holiday season, you, too, have the opportunity to get out of your comfort zone, if you have not already done so, and do something to help some- one in need. It could be meeting the need of a church member or guest, or someone in the community surrounding your church or your home. It could be visiting a nursing home or taking on a project working with your city or town, and so on. You get the idea. Why not give someone the opportunity to meet Jesus through your giving, and leave them with the memory of a random act of kindness that will last a lifetime.
Remember, all the time we have to make an impact on people in this world is right now. What are you waiting for? Make today count!
Ednor A. P. Davison is the communication director for the Atlantic Union Conference and editor for the Atlantic Union Gleaner.