In the midst of the crowded yet desolate city he walked with his hands pushed deeply into the pockets of his tattered jacket, head tilted down to keep the wind from his face. The world bustled all around him... but he was alone.
His heart was heavy, and his stomach was hungry, and he searched for a place of warmth and comfort. He ducked into an alleyway; a temporary shield from the wind. But his frozen toes still curled tightly inside his worn-out shoes. He would find food here to appease the ache in his stomach. He watched as the bags were carried out and tossed away, then he silently slipped into a small familiar space between the cold cement wall and his dinner. His nose had grown accustomed to the smell, but his heart could not get used to the emptiness.
Just down the street she stood in the warmth of the kitchen slicing the Christmas lamb and arranging it neatly on the platter, while her friend broke the bread beside her and placed the pieces into the overflowing baskets to be placed on the tables. They had volunteered that day to go into the heart of that desperate city and prepare a feast at the shelter. They served contentedly along-side many others, hoping to offer the warmth of a fire and a filling meal to the cold and the hungry. They smiled a warm welcome, they wrapped compassionate arms around lonely shoulders, and they offered a simple gift of love to fill the empty hearts.
But he didn't know about the feast that was being prepared that day. He didn't know about the warm fire or the open arms to welcome him. He didn't know about the gift of love that was offered. So he remained in the alleyway alone, wrapping his thread-bare jacket a little tighter around his aching soul.
How will they know if we do not tell them? (Romans 10:14) ...that Jesus volunteered to come into this dark and desperate world (John 12:46), to wrap arms of compassion around lonely shoulders(Mark 1:41), to prepare a feast for the hungry (Psalm 23:5, Matthew 22:2), and to offer himself, The Christmas Lamb (1Peter 1:18,19) and The Bread of Life (John 6:51), as a gift of love(John 3:16).
Go therefore.... (Matthew 28:19,20)