Speaking about feeding the hungry and giving a drink to the thirsty, Jesus added a twist to the notion of satisfying needs: “Whatsoever you do to the least of my brothers, so you do unto me.” A British woman recalls her experience when she nursed the wounded during World War II:
“Love is most likely to spring from another’s need of us. And the fact of spending ourselves for another [to satisfy need] always generates new life in us.
Everyone who has nursed the sick or wounded knows that for so long as the patient needs it, a special grace of life-giving energy is given to the nurse ... We love those people most of all whose need awakens a response in us that floods us with creative energy... It is very often the response in ourselves that tells us that we have found the lost Child.”
The nurse was referring to the words Jesus spoke to Saint Joseph and the Virgin Mary. They had lost Jesus for three days and found him in the Temple.
They asked Jesus why he had stayed behind. As recorded in Saint Luke’s gospel, he answered (2:49): “Why were you looking for me! Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?”
Love happens when we satisfy a need. The love born at that moment qualifies as divine. You satisfy Christ by satisfying someone’s need. When you care for someone who needs your help, you find the Child lost in the Temple. He has “remained behind” in that other person because this is his Father’s house.