Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
When you reap your harvest in your field and forget a sheaf in the field, you shall not go back to get it; it shall be left… When you gather the grapes of your vineyard, do not glean what is left; it shall be left for the alien, the orphan, and the widow. -Deuteronomy 24:19-21
When Ruth and Naomi found themselves widowed, homeless and hungry, they survived by gleaning in the fields of Boaz. Showing the compassion instructed in Deuteronomy, Boaz left some grain in his field. He welcomed gleaners, saying, “The Lord be with you.”
What does this passage quoted above tell me about generosity, about leaving something for those in need? I don’t have a field or a vineyard, but I do have a calendar. Can I learn to leave time to help those who need food or shelter or some other gift of compassion that I can offer?
Leaving time free allows me to be interrupted if a friend needs someone to listen or if a neighbor needs a meal. Leaving space in my schedule gives me time to slow down and think of others, to think of God’s grace given for me and the ways I can offer that grace to another.
In fact, that’s the way Jesus sacrificed himself and died on the cross for us, so that we may live forever. May we always make time and space for others! Amen.
Pastor Dennis Chung