Could the need possibly have been as desperate 2000 years ago, when James wrote those words? It's hard to imagine. Consider just a few of the statistics highlighted in the Evangelism Explosion Seniors' workbook:
- More than 50 million Americans are likely to spend their last days in some type of extended-care facility
- 75% will be women
- 60% will never have a visitor
There are many forms of torment in this world, but surely the top ten list would have to include the years of loneliness suffered by the fragile elderly whose only companionship comes from people who are being paid to walk through their doors.
The good news is that we don't have to travel farther than the nearest nursing home to help alleviate this loneliness for at least a few -- and to share with them the great Good News of the Lord's love for each of them.
It costs nothing but time. There are no special requirements other than a loving heart and a willingness to serve the One who died for you. And once you've asked Him to order your steps, all it takes to get started is a call to the Activities Director of the home that seems to be the one He is calling you to.
You'll find the rewards phenomenal even in this life. But that's nothing compared to what you might gain for all eternity.
"Then the King will say to those on His right hand, 'Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.' ... 'Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.' (Matthew 25:34-36, 40b)