With all of the lunches and suppers to which a person receives invites, it’s no wonder this is called the festive season. In fact, many people find that they must choose which dinner to attend on a given evening.
But there are many people who don’t receive an invite. Furthermore, our society in North America is so wealthy that being impoverished is considered a shame. As far as I know, nobody wants to be known as a moocher because they’re too poor to repay their hosts.
The line between wealth and poverty is sharper in undeveloped nations. Likewise, it was the same in the first century. Those who were disabled had an especially hard time as they could only beg each day.
Since this was so, Jesus commanded his followers to care for less-fortunate folks. This is what Christ said in Luke 14:12-14 (BBE). “And he said to the master of the house, ‘When you give a feast, do not send for your friends and your brothers and your family or your neighbours who have wealth, for they may give a feast for you, and so you will get a reward. But when you give a feast, send for the poor and the blind and those who are broken in body: And you will have a blessing, because they will not be able to give you any payment, and you will get your reward when the upright come back from the dead.'”
One objection I can immediately foresee is that most folks don’t know individuals who fall into the afore-mentioned categories. We have so much in the way of government programs and charities that impoverished individuals seem to be invisible.
Christians can easily tell from this passage that we are the ones to do the work of hospitality ourselves rather than to leave it to somebody else. Not only is there the blessing we’ll receive at the end of the age but we can make some excellent friends as well.
I’ll be writing about the correct role of charitable acts in my next book called You Think You’re Going to Heaven? Though Christmas is a family time, people can still invite those persons who society ignores because they’re disabled. And why wait for Christmas? Inviting disadvantaged people at any time of year helps them out immensely.