Tonight, there are people who will sleep in their own beds for the last night. There are people who are truly depend-ant on the kindness of friends and strangers. There are people with overflowing gifts of abundance to which society assigns no value.
There are also people, who are only just one paycheck away from the fate that awaits those I have spoken about above. Is it you? You don't think so? It *is* many of us. Don't fool yourself.
"Am I my brother's keeper? ... Yes, I am my brother's keeper. I am under a moral obligation to him that is inspired, notby maudlin sentimentality, but by the higher duty I owe myself. It is when you have done your work honestly, whenyou have contributed your share to the common fund that you begin to live. Then, as Whitman said, you can take outyour soul; you can commune with yourself; you can take a comrade by the hand and you can look into his soul and in that holy communion you live. And if you don't know what that is, or if you are not at least on the edge of it, it is de-nied you even to look into the Promised Land." - Eugene V. Debs, speech given at the founding of the Federal Coun-cil of Churches, Girard, Kansas, 1908
So what do you do? Greet them as you were greeting Christ. Let them know, you are there. Don't pick them up and carry them off. Don't try to fix them. Remember, they might not be broken. They may have lost many things but they have not lost their dignity or their sense of self. Be worthy of their trust. Live true to your word. Walk in faith that they may be guided to feel safe to ask of you anything they may need. Walk in faith that you will be able and ready to give to them what they ask.We are a reflection of each other. Look deep into your brother's eyes. You will see yourself looking back at you.
published December 2009
First Congregational United Church of Christ