One Of The Least

September 9, 2016
by Liz Samis

On a recent visit to New York City, my husband Reg and I were in Times Square, and we saw an older woman protecting a pile of cardboard boxes. She was homeless and dressed in many layers of clothes, with a hat on, which reminded us of someone from the Andes. We sat there on fancy, red patio chairs and took in all the people taking selfies and all the glitter and glamour around us.

The woman approached us, and we started to chat. I said, "I detect a British accent." She said, "That's right." She asked where we were from, and we told her. She said, "I have been to Canada, to Toronto and Montreal, and a place where you had to get there by boat." I said "Nova Scotia?" and she said "That's the place." She sat down with us, and I reached over and touched her icy-cold hands that seemed to be locked in position. I said, "Your hands are cold. Don't you have any gloves?" She said, "I did, but the police took them when they took all my stuff. Somebody had bought me two really nice pairs of gloves." She told me about her wicked landlord who had doubled her $900-a-month rent. She said that there had been rats in the basement coming up into the apartment. She never asked for money, but I reached into my purse and gave her a $20 bill. She seemed surprised and delighted, and right away, she said, "I am going to get a Chinese dinner." I replied, "You just do that, and enjoy it. I am sorry that you have to live on the streets." She said, "That's all right; God is with me. There are people down here on the streets that are suicidal, and they come and talk to me. I help them." As we parted, she reached up and kissed me on the cheek, and we gave each other hugs. She asked me to pray for her, and I said I would.

I had felt Jesus in this whole encounter, but at that moment and since then, I have been thinking that it was as if Jesus Himself were in that older woman. It humbled me and caused me to think that Jesus can use anyone to draw us to Himself. It was powerful.

When people ask me what the best part of our trip to New York was, I would have to say that it was my encounter with that homeless woman.

Matthew 25:37-40 – Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, "Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?" And the King will answer and say to them, "Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me." (NKJV)

May each of our hearts be open this day to the possibility of encountering Jesus within those whom we meet and treating them as if they were the Lord, Himself.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for the opportunities that You give us each and every day to encounter You in those around us. May our eyes be open to Your presence in our midst and our hearts be ready and able to embrace all of them in the Spirit and love of Jesus. In Christ's name, we ask. Amen.

About the author:

Liz Samis <samisre@highspeedfx.net>
Elmira, Ontario, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Thanks very much.


    Well said. Thank you.


    Help the needy always. Amen.


    Great story of encouragement Liz.


    Thanks Liz. That’s the best devotional in quite a while. Not contrived.
    God bless.


    Liz
    Right on-a wonderful devotional that filled my heart and along with your devotional I loved to read the Thought for today.


    Hi Liz,
    You are so right, we never know how or by whom Jesus is revealed to us.
    Blessings.


    Awesome story. Makes me wonder about some of my experiences, and how many I didn’t recognize as such an opportunity to engage someone. He can show up at any time.


    Hurray for you Liz, you are one of the ones that gets it. Thanks for sharing your touching experience and insights, and helping to spread God’s love to and through all people. It was a privilege to read about your personal encounter with that dear homeless woman. Have a blessed day going about doing good.
    Blessings.


    Wow – what an incredible story. Thank you for sharing it with us. It reminds me of the time I was at the Grey Cup. I was walking to the train station and a lady came along side of me – obviously very hard up. She asked for money saying it was $40 a night to stay at the shelter. I gave her $20 and she said “God Bless you”. I felt like I was the one blessed.


    Hi Liz,
    Thanks so much for your devotional this morning. I recently preached on this scripture and wish I had had your story to use as an illustration. If it is ok with you I will file your story for future use. Thanks again for the reminder to be aware of Jesus’ presence (and blessing) in our daily lives if we have ‘eyes to see’. A great start to my day! blessings.


    Dear Liz Samis,
    At a bus stop, I gave a Bible tract to a young lady. “She said “Thanks, you made my day.”
    Let us continue to reach out to people even when wondering what might be our reception.
    Thanks for sharing your encounter. I pray that you and I, and many more of us who are Christ’s persons, will have more of these encounters — for Jesus Christ’s sake. Amen


    Dear Liz:
    A few years ago there was a TV show called “Joan of Arcadia”. In this Joan, a young teenage girl, encountered and spoke to God who took on the form a many different kinds of people. I really enjoyed this show and it brought me to think as you so wonderfully wrote today, that we can see God in all the people we meet daily. I’m sure if we all did that, the world would certainly know His peace.
    May God bless you always.


    Good Morning, Liz!
    What a wonderful surprise I received when I turned on my computer to read my daily devotional from PresbyCan!! Congratulations, and Blessings on becoming a writer for this devotional… one I so enjoy.
    Yesterday, I had notified the office that I was taking a vacation break from receiving this devotional, as I’ll be away. Thus, I wasn’t sure whether I would have anything to read this morning, but as you so well expressed, Jesus was at work in all of this, and He knew I would want this morning’s message. Thank you, Jesus! Thank you Liz!!
    I look forward to many more devotionals signed by Liz Samis. May my eyes ever be open to situations where I meet our Lord, incognito. Again, my thanks!


    Hello
    Wow! I enjoyed your devotion today. It reminded me with great excitement of an experience I had a few years back. I was working and busy running around but noticed an old man going to get a drink at the fountain and it wasn’t working. I heard him muddle something but instead of going on about my business I crossed the street and asked the waitress for a take out cup of water. Bless her heart she even put ice in the cup. I told her who it was for. I gave it to the man as I said, I noticed you wanting a drink of water, here you go. He said thank you and I said God bless and turned to go and he said, God bless you. I got to my car which was close by and as I turned around he was gone!!!! Wow… my thoughts went to that Bible verse you have today and the thoughts were overwhelming. God does use different people and I am so blessed that He used me that day.
    God bless you in all that you do.


    Thank you, Liz.


    Dear Liz: I appreciated your very touching devotional. Such a blessing your experience was. I recall one time when I gave a man on the street the last two dollars I had in my pocket, and my hubby said, he will just go to the nearest liquor store and buy a bottle of something. I said, well perhaps he needed it more than me, and two dollars will never hurt me, and I would have given more had I had in my pocket at the time. Like your title says “One Of The Least”. Thank you for sharing this with us.


    Hello Liz,
    Thank you for sharing your experience with the homeless woman with us: that indeed was a deep and powerful moment. “What a friend we have in Jesus” – she has, you have, all of us have, as we open our hearts to Him. Blessings,
    (BC)


    Hello Liz,
    Thank you for sharing a God Moment with all the readers of the Presbycan Daily.
    Yes God moment, when God touches our lives through someone else and we respond and are truly blessed by it.
    May God continue to guide and inspire you as you write devotionals.
    (Ontario)

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