In What I Have Done And What I Have FAILED To Do

On March 22, 2013 by Jamy Shaffer

This week as part of my church’s Lenten journey, we once again welcomed Father Michael Moore who is visiting on a mission from his home port of California.  In second of his reflections throughout the week, Father Moore discussed the sin of omission.  Instead of the things that we DO that draw us away from God, he focused on those things which we take for granted what we should be doing.


Matthew 25:34-36

Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world.   For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

Father Moore went far beyond the literal meaning behind these words.  Hunger and thirst far beyond physical nourishment of the things we eat but also refreshing our souls with the Word of God.  Welcoming a stranger may not mean only a person whom we do not know but also making family, friends, anyone we may encounter feel welcome.  Sad to think but have any of us ever felt less than welcome in otherwise familiar surroundings?  On the flip side, have we ever made our own family or friends feel alienated?  Nakedness may not be a lack of clothes but a lack of affection.  Illness may not always be easy to recognize… perhaps it is something internal that plagues a person.  Someone in prison could be in a self-made prison full of mental bars.

Father Moore illustrated our failings by drawing on a story from his past.  He was at his first rodeo.  A few rows in front of him sat an elderly woman who had to have a large, awkward oxygen tank with her in order to breathe.  Moments later, a group of loud, drunk spectators sat in front of this woman and persisted in reviling in their inebriation.  The lady asked if they would control themselves so that she could watch the rodeo.  A small scuffle took place in which no one stood up to defend the elderly lady.  She then turned around and said: “Thank you all.  Thank you all for doing nothing.”

Matthew 25:41-43

Sometimes, the things which we do NOT do speak more powerfully than those things that we do.

Truly, I tell you , whatever you did for the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me


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