1 John 3: 17-18. But if anyone has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him? 18Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.
If you’re a patient, a stay in the hospital can be a frightening experience. New sights, sounds and schedules not to mention big words, uncomfortable procedures, and embarrassing gowns can be upsetting to almost all of us. Even so, most folks would readily agree that a hospital visit is preferable to being released from the hospital and having a taxi dump us off in an unfamiliar location.
According to an Associated Press article from last week, that is exactly what happened to 64-year-old Carol Ann Reyes. A homeless person, Carol was released from Los Angeles Bellflower hospital in March 2006 and dropped off on Skid Row in front of the Union Rescue Mission. Still wearing her hospital gown and slippers, she wandered around for several minutes until the rescue mission folk took her in.
According to the LA City Attorney, the practice of dumping homeless patients may have been done by more than a dozen area hospitals, along with the institution owned by the nation’s largest HMO.
The President of the HMO (Kaiser Permanente) said the release of Carol was a breakdown of hospital protocol and an exception.
I hope so.
My heart goes out to Carol and the other homeless people who have been treated so poorly by a great medical institution. As for the HMO, and all of us who have been blessed by the Lord, the words from 1st John provide a Godly directive on how stewards are supposed to work. John said, “if anyone has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him? Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.”
As we look at the Savior we realize Jesus didn’t just preach a good game. His wonderful words were backed up by the performance of dedicated deeds. From His Bethlehem birth, past His crucifixion, resurrection and ascension, Jesus shows the purity of the Father’s love. Indeed, the Father’s desire to save us became the loving motivation for everything our Savior did. It should also be the inspiration for all who know Him as their Redeemer. Jesus said it this way, “Even as you have done it unto the least of these, you have done it unto me.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, today I pray for those who have no home, the poor, the refugees, the runaways. Watch over them, and keep them safe. Use me, wherever you can, to share your story in words and reflect your love in action. I ask it in your name, Amen.
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