I had trouble closing my dresser drawers this afternoon. I pushed harder on the thick padding of shirts and pants. No movement. It was full – really, really full. I tossed the remaining pieces of clothing from the neatly folded laundry pile back onto my bed.
Now I must interject, it’s not that this dresser drawer is the epitome of disorganization, but rather is was simply so full of clothing that not one more t-shirt was going to fit. And this dresser is not small – it’s a decent size dresser. The drawer I was filling – or rather attempting to fill – was the biggest of the four drawers. That’s when it hit me.
I suddenly recognized the amazing blessing that was sitting before my eyes – I had completely overlooked it. What I saw at the moment was a brief inconvenience that was causing me trauma. Just think about how many millions would love to have my problem. So many parents who would do anything to give their child the gift of having to struggle to fit all of their clothing in a massive dresser. In that moment, I bent over on my dresser and came near to weeping.
I remembered Jesus’ words to those souls who believed that they had the right to enter heaven:
Depart from me, you who are cursed into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.
Oh, but “Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison?” they asked.
The reply is chilling, “I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.”
I need to stop complaining and worrying about what I posses and how I dress. God hit me hard on my issue of pride once again. I was proud of what I look like or what I wore and what I possessed. My humility was false because I was taking pride in my humility. I realized that I needed to stop worrying about a need for money for college. God would provide. If the birds and flowers were taken care of, I would be fine. As that Caedmon’s Call song says, “You know the plans you have for me / and You can’t plan the ends and not plan the means.” I rested assured in the sovereignty of God.
Moreover, I realized that I must see the needs of others, both physically and spiritually. I understood that life is not about me – it’s about God and Him glorified through the salvation of souls and the cross. He cares about humanity, and I must care about humanity as well. I must share not only clothing, but also the gospel. That must be the ultimate goal, yet I must not neglect the act of sharing food, of giving money, of clothing the naked, or nursing the sick. I have been commanded to share these blessings. Does that mean giving away clothing? It certainly points to that and I believe that may very well be an act that comes from this experience.
As a Christian, I knew generosity had not been one of my characteristics. We see that Paul encourages the Corinthians to “see that you also excel in the grace of giving.” It is only by grace that we can give. Now, Paul tells them that he is not â€œcommandingâ€ them, “but I want to test the sincerity of your love by comparing it with the earnestness of others.” Then he hits home: “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for our sakes He became poor, so that you through His poverty might become rich.” I must follow Christ’s example.
It is clear to me that I’ll never put my laundry away in quite the same way – or see the supposed inconvenience of filling my drawer in the same way. May God always remind us of that overflowing dresser drawer.