Add Intentional to the RandomPosted: March 18, 2009
This is a follow-up thought to the post I wrote last week on Isaiah 58.
I think there is tremendous value to randomly serving and blessing people. Two reasons:
1. It helps keep our hearts tender to the unmet needs and opportunities around us.
2. If we believe that God is already at work in the heart and life of every man, woman, and child, then we know a random act of blessing may very well be another layer in that work.
I would love for our church and Christian culture in general to be known as a people who give, bless, and serve whenever and wherever the opportunity to do so presents itself. That’s what Jesus did:
“As he passed by, he saw a man blind from birth…” John 9:1 (ESV)
But, if we only focus on random serving, we risk missing a powerful opportunity: intentionally serving and investing in people that we know and love…and know well enough to know what they need and know they could never repay us if we helped to meet that need.
This is where God has challenged me big time over the last two weeks. Who do I know…I mean really know…that struggles to put food on the table? Who do I know…I mean really know…that doesn’t have a decent coat to wear on cold nights? Who do I know…I mean really know…that doesn’t have a trusted friend that loves them?
What if we all knew several people/families so well that we knew their big needs? What if in addition to randomly serving and blessing, we intentionally invested in meeting those needs? Who knows, maybe what starts out as a random act of blessing can turn into a relationship where later you are able to intentionally invest.
I might be a little pollyanna in my thinking here, but I think this is what Jesus meant when he said:
“The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.'” Matthew 25:40 (ESV)
Should we randomly serve and bless people? Absolutely! Should we know people well enough that we can intentionally meet specific needs knowing they could never repay us? Absolutely! It’s both/and, not either/or.