Splashes That Matter
"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)
Recently, we had our kitchen cabinets repainted. Bright white. For about one week, they were gorgeous. Then, the inevitable happened. A reach, a spill … cranberry juice all over. Seriously, how did it get into so many nooks and crannies? For the next week, I found telltale burgundy splashes hiding in the craziest places.
It got me thinking about my own splashes. Because whether I like it or not, simply by living this life (working, volunteering, even grocery shopping), I make splashes that impact others. The words and attitude that I surround my heart with? This becomes what I splash out. And each day, each moment, I get to choose.
Throughout the day, I may meet a stressed-out cashier, a new mom starving for conversation, a coworker seeking advice. When I get home these moments continue: my teenager wants to talk, my husband would love me to sit with him and my 6-year-old wants to show me his favorite rock. This, of course, goes along with laundry that needs folding, dinner that needs making, football cleats that need buying and emails that need returning — all by the day’s end!
If I’m attentive to the whispers of my heart, I recognize these small moments with others as opportunities to jump in fully and splash. I allow time to splash the light and love and mercy of Jesus, allowing Him to touch their hearts through me. Amazing things happen when I choose to splash.
But when I remain preoccupied, inwardly focused on my own agenda, dullness replaces the beauty God intended for that moment. The opportunity is lost, and hearts remain untouched, including my own.
I am reminded of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-27). The story tells of a man, beaten and naked, lying on the side of the road, who is ignored by both a priest and a Levite. They actually go out of their way to avoid contact.
A simple man from an unliked group of people, whom the Bible calls the Good Samaritan, does the extraordinary. He veers off course. He changes his plans without checking his schedule. His actions aren’t powered by some amazing intellect, off-shore bank accounts, superhuman strength or a dizzying social calendar. It was this simple: "When he saw him, he took pity on him." (Luke 10:33, NIV). The Good Samaritan chose to splash love in the ugliness, creating beauty in the moment.
How about me? Would I see the beaten man? Or would I be looking down, checking my texts? If I saw him, would I allow Jesus’ incredible love and mercy to flow through me? Or would I seek the other side of the road, rushing to opportunities that line up perfectly with my schedule and social status?
It is important I get this one right. Being willing to splash Jesus’ love on others isn’t a suggestion. The story of the Good Samaritan begins with this question; "On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. ‘Teacher,’ he asked, ‘What must I do to inherit eternal life?’" (Luke 10:25, NIV). Splashes matter. For in a splash, we can see the face of God.
Dear Lord, so often I am busy, focused on the next "to-do" on my list, and I miss the opportunity to be fully present with others. Open my eyes, Lord, and help me to see Your face in all whose path I cross today. Let Your mercy shine through me so they may feel Your loving embrace. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
Proverbs 3:27, "Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to act." (NIV)
Proverbs 11:25, "Whoever brings blessing will be enriched, and one who waters will himself be watered."(ESV)
REFLECT AND RESPOND:
Be watchful today; slow your pace and look up. Do you see someone who needs God’s loving kindness? Make a commitment to respond.