Hungry. Thirsty. Lost.

Who exactly did He come for?  He tells us He came for the hungry.  Have you ever been hungry?  Sure, hungry for food.  But what else have you hungered for?  Love?  Acceptance?  Happiness?  Then He came for you.  He came for all the starving, the anxious, empty, famished and unfilled.  He came for anyone who’s ever felt weak or hollow or faint.  He came for the unfed, the undernourished, the ones yearning and pining and wishing for more.  For the one’s who’ve never felt good enough, or smart enough, or pretty enough, or just, enough.  He came to feed you with Himself.
 
He came for the thirsty ones.  The ones whose hearts are dry and parched and lifeless.  He came to bring living water to the burning, dusty souls of the hopeless and the barren.  Your breathless, parched, baked and exhausted dreams will find a place in Him.  He came to flood you with hope, to submerge you in new life, to drench you in love.  He came to drown you in Himself.  He came for the strangers among us.  The outsiders who look different, talk differently and pray differently.  The visitors we didn’t expect.  The guests we didn’t invite.  He came for the interlopers, the intruders, the migrants.  He came for the wandering and the transient.  The ones not like us.  The ones who ought to learn English and try to fit in.  Only they don’t and they make us uncomfortable.  He came to make a home for Himself in that uncomfortable wound in our hearts that we allow our fears and judgments to make.  He came to draw us all to Himself.
 
He came for the naked.  He came for the defenseless, the helpless, the hopeless and the threadbare.  He came for the most vulnerable ones:  the baby in the womb, the disabled in the shadows, the elderly in empty rooms down long hallways.  He came for anyone who’s been stripped of hope, peeled of joy or divested of their rightful place.  For all of us left raw and wounded by the ways of the world.  He came to clothe us with Himself.  He came for the sick.  For anyone ailing or confined, broken down or diseased of body, mind, or spirit.  He came for the defective, delicate and disordered.  For the feeble, feverish and frail.  He came for anyone whose sick and failing attempts at doing it for themselves just haven’t worked out.  He came for the ones who are weak from trying; for the ones infected with the “me” virus; for the ones who just can’t do it anymore.  He came to save us from our suffering with Himself, hung on a Cross, dying for Love.
 
He came for the prisoners.  The ones captured by sin, barred in by despair, sentenced to death.  He came for the caged and the closeted, the apprehensive and the impounded.  For the shut-in, the shut-out, the locked up, the put away, the ones told to shut up.  For anyone who’s felt detained, constrained or forgotten.  For the ones who’ve made their own prisons, He came to be the key.  He came to be freedom for us all.  Jesus came for all the people who know what it feels like when we say “sin.”  The ones who hunger and thirst, the ones who feel alone and vulnerable, for everyone who is heartsick and imprisoned by a mess of their own making.  For the ones who’ve given up trying to find the answer.  Jesus came with the question:  “Will you marry me?”
 
“For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me.”
                            —The Gospel of St. Matthew, 25:35-36
 
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