“Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?” (Matt. 25:44)

“I’m an old woman and I don’t beat around the bush. Your child has a serious birth defect.” Those words, spoken by a pediatrician, marked the beginning of a roller-coaster ride. Our son, Joshua, had been born about forty minutes earlier with a diaphragmatic hernia, an abdominal condition that resulted in his small intestine and part of his stomach being located where his left lung belonged. Within hours, he was airlifted to a hospital in Kansas City where the problem was surgically corrected. Although the surgery took place when Joshua was only three days old, it was followed by a long period of recovery in which his condition was good one day and bad the next. No one in our extended family had ever gone through something like this. This only happened to “other” people, or so we had thought. Suddenly, we were the “other” people.

My family did not go through this crisis alone. We had the support of a loving church family and a large number of coworkers. Several weeks later, we brought Joshua home, and today we have a healthy thirteen-year-old son. Sometimes I remind myself that there are always people going through similar circumstances. Be sensitive to opportunities to share the love of Jesus Christ with people whose lives suddenly grind to a halt, as they suddenly become the “other” people.

Ask God to help you become sensitive to the pain of others.

Paul Zinter serves as a substitute teacher. He enjoys writing, bread making, and teaching at his local church.

© 2018 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission.