Matthew 25: Let's Be Sheep, Not Goats
‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.’ – Matthew 25:40 (NIV)
This passage from Matthew 25:31-46 challenges us, since it indicates that people who demonstrate concern and generosity toward helping those in need – in tangible ways – will be rewarded. And that others have no such hope. It’s not enough to just have concern, for as the apostle James wrote, “faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.” (James 2:17)
The Bible also teaches that it’s possible to help others in ways that lead to no reward, perhaps to be seen by others or to receive thanks. In other words, without true concern for those being helped. Paul addressed this in 1 Corinthians 13:3:
“… if I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I surrender my body to be burned, but do not have love, it profits me nothing.”
Our 501(c) (3) charitable organization, Sheep Not Goats, was created to help the poor in Nicaragua, the most economically destitute country in Central America. We built a farm. Later we began training women in our small community to knit beautiful baby blankets. This ministry of Sheep Not Goats is called Sheep Dreamzzz. All of the “profit” from our blankets and loveys goes to the 11 or so women who knit them.
We’re pretty sure you didn’t come here looking for a baby blanket, but please keep us and the poor who make our blankets in mind the next time you need a nice baby gift.
For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.’ – Matthew 25:35-36 (NIV)
Our approach to helping revolves around work, not handouts. That’s because people generally know best what their true needs are. And like most people, they gain dignity from earning income through the work of their own hands.
Our knitters – Aura, Brenda, Martha, Cruz, and all the others – work inside our small home in a safe and clean environment. There’s no smog, smoke, or animal hair around. Not like the factory environments that produce most baby goods. Look at almost any baby blanket, including expensive ones, and you can tell it was cut from a roll and assembled in a factory.
The Sheep Dreamzzz women work as a team, helping as many as possible to complete a blanket each week. They have become expert artisans producing baby blankets (and now loveys) of outstanding quality.
Everyone gives a baby gift from time to time. the difference is that ours come with the story of how they helped a woman feed her family.