If time permitted, I would tell of Kingdom Disciples I know who:
- Set up “grain banks” for storing millet each year with nomadic tribes in a famine-ridden region in Africa
- Created simple systems delivering clean running water in Tibetan Buddhist villages in the Himalayas
- Provided emergency clothing and blankets for Syrian refugees last winter
- Built small houses for hundreds of homeless families in Mexico
- Established clinics to treat malaria victims
The inspiring list could go on for pages, but let’s take a look at one story from West Bengal, India.
While we sat in a circle on a dirt floor in a small house, one of the Hindu-background followers of Jesus told us a story from the Gospels. Another led us in a few Bengali praise songs. Someone else served us the Lord’s Supper. After my delightful visit, I heard an example of how these believers are responding to the command: “love your neighbor as you love yourself”.
A simple health care workshop was hosted for the fellowships. Among the issues, was how to help a baby sick from diarrhea. Diarrhea is the world’s leading killer of children. About 1.2 million die each year! Mothers learned how to make Oral Rehydration Solution (ORS) using clean water, sugar and salt.
One day after the workshop there was a knock on the door at the home of one of the mothers. She opened to find her Muslim neighbor holding her dehydrated baby in her arms. She was in desperate need of help. It became obvious the baby was suffering from diarrhea which led to dehydration. Quickly the clean water along with correct measurements of sugar and salt were gathered. One mother showed the other how to make ORS.
Gradually they gave the ORS drink to the baby. As they sat together, the neighbor learned that this life-saving skill was taught at a gathering of followers of Jesus. She left the home hopeful her child would get well.
A few days later came another knock at the believer’s door. It was a happy mother with her healthy child. She poured out her heart, “Thank you for helping save my baby. Now I know how to do it too. When and where does your group meet? Do you think I could come?” She was a Muslim, her neighbor a Hindu now following Jesus, yet God’s love—so practically displayed—overcame any barriers.
The love of God shines through when Kingdom Disciples help others, whether near or far away, receive the basic necessities of life.
Question for reflection: Do you or any of your neighbors lack any of the basic necessities of life: food, clean water, clothing, shelter or health care?
Kingdom prayer: Matthew 6:32-33 says, “These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and He will give you everything you need.” Like the Bengali mother, help us to live as Kingdom Disciples and to help others do the same. Together we will see You meet all of our needs.