December 02, 2016

As we enjoy the festivities of this wonderful Christmas season, I hope we will all take time to reflect on the birth and life of Jesus Christ and remember His admonishment to serve others.  We truly come to know Him and feel the unspeakable joy He has to offer when we take time to lift up one another.  Here’s a poem by an anonymous writer to remind us of our duty to others during this blessed time of year:

 

Unawares

(Anonymous)

 

They say the Master is coming to honor the town today, and none can tell at whose house or home the Master will choose to stay.

 

And I thought while my heart beat wildly, what if he should come to mine? How would I strive to entertain and honor this guest divine?

 

And straight I turned to toiling to make my house more neat. I swept and polished and garnished and decked it with blossoms sweet.

 

I was troubled for fear the Master might come before my task was done. And hastened and worked the faster, and watched the hurrying sun.

 

But right in the midst of my duties, a woman came to my door. She had come to tell me her sorrows, and my comfort and aid implore.

 

And I said, “I cannot listen nor help you today. I have greater things to attend to,” and the pleader turned away.

 

But soon there came another; a cripple then pale and gray.  And said “O let me stop and rest a while, in your home I pray.

 

I traveled since morning, I am hungry and faint and weak. My heart is full of misery, and comfort help I seek.”

 

And I said, “I am grieved and sorry, but I cannot help you today. I look for the great and noble guest,” and the cripple went away.

 

The day wore onward swiftly and my task was nearly done.  And a prayer was ever in my heart that the Master to me might come.

 

And I thought I would spring to meet him, and serve him with utmost care.  When a little child stood by me, with a face so sweet and fair.

 

Sweet but with marks of teardrops and his clothes were tattered and old.  A finger was burned and bleeding and his little bare feet were cold.

 

And I said, “I’m sorry for you. You are sorely in need of care.  But I cannot stop and give it, you must hasten on elsewhere.”

 

At the words a saddening shadow swept o’er his blue veined brow. “Someone will feed and clothe you dear, but I am too busy now.”

 

At last the day was ended, and my toil was over and done. My house was swept and garnished, and I watched in the darkness alone.

 

Watched but no footstep sounded, no one ere passed at the gate. No one entered my cottage door. I could only pause and wait.

 

I waited until night and deepened, and the Master had not come. He has entered some other door, and gladdened some other home.

 

My labor has been for nothing, and I bowed my head and wept. My heart was sore with longing, yet in spite of all I slept.

 

Then the Master stood before me; his face was grave and fair. “Three times today I came to your door and craved your pity and care. Three times you sent me onward, unhelpful and uncomforted, and the blessings you might have had are lost; your chance to serve has fled.”

 

“Oh Lord, Dear Lord, forgive me. How could I know it was Thee?” My very soul was shamed and bowed, into the depths of humility.

 

He said, “The sin is pardoned, but the blessing is lost to Thee. For comforting not the least of mine, you have failed to comfort me.”

 


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