I mused over that word the other day. A sort of compound word. Divided it says Christ and mass. It means, "Communion of Christ."
But, in my mind I pictured Christ looking at the masses. The people who came to hear Him speak of hope, to feel His touch, to be healed in their bodies and souls.
It occurred to me that He looks at the masses in a different way than some do. He looks and sees a face. All too often, there are those who only see governments, presidents, kings, prime ministers, dictators, and the like.
I admit, it is easy to resent certain people groups when the news shows crowds shaking their fists at the sky, chanting, burning our flag.
It is easy to fear certain people groups, like North Korea, because of the constant threat and desire to use a nuclear bomb.
When images of mud slides, hurricanes, tornadoes, and broken levees, are flashed on our television screens, and we hear how thousands of Americans have lost their homes, our hearts go out to them. But life goes on and all too soon, we forget.
In fact, some even dismiss the tragedy by holding the opinion that these people took a risk in the first place when they made their homes there.
But what most don’t see is the old Iraqi woman stooping over a fire while her granddaughter sits beside her drawing pictures in the dirt with a stick, or the tears running down the cheeks of a the North Korean mother who clutches her toddler, limp from starvation, because all of the food is given to the soldiers by the madman who dictates the country, or the little boy in New Orleans sobbing, reaching for his dog, but being told he can’t take his beloved pet as he is pushed into a bus.
We may not like the attitudes, the actions, or the policies of other countries, governments, cultures, or the personal choices of others.
We may get offended, insulted, and even angry. But we must not let that anger turn us against a people group and blind us to the individual beings.
Jesus' heart was broken by the masses. He saw each individual. Even those who stood over Him while driving spikes through his hands. That's why He came. To forgive and to give hope and life for everyone. Not so we could have a holiday.
This year, if you truly want to give Jesus something, then donate money or provisions to the someone in need. A meaningful gift to give someone is to donate money in honor of that person.
I have a suggestion for a great place to donate, Mercy International in Honduras. This ministry, headed by the founders, Henry and Cindy Lowman, feeds the poor, provides medicine for the sick, has an education program called "A Hope and a Future," which sponsors children to go to school. You see, after 6th grade the children have to pay $200.00 a year in order to go to high school. Most have parents who don't earn that much in a year and the average family has at least 4 children.
100% of the money given goes to the people of Honduras. Their stateside address is:
P.O. Box 9794
Springdale, AR 72703
Another great and safe place to give is Gateway Educational Services in Istanbul Turkey. For more information go to their website: www.gatewayeducation.org
Have a wonderful holiday with your family and friends. And this season remember to see what Jesus sees. Remember that the masses have faces.