Today and tomorrow, we have been blessed to help YWAM (Youth WithA Mission) at Glacier Bible Camp for the Indian Youth Camp (IYC). They are an amazing group and I am amazed to see how the Lord is working at this camp. I pray you enjoy the pictures and the video’s we took today. They are about Tribal Waves team.
It was written, “After careful consideration, Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho when he fell into the hands of bandits. They stripped him, beat him, and went away, leaving him half dead. By chance, a priest was traveling along that road. When he saw the man, he went by on the other side. Similarly, a descendant of Levi came to that place. When he saw the man, he also went by on the other side. But as he was traveling along, a Samaritan came across the man. When the Samaritan saw him, he was moved with compassion. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring oil and wine on them. Then he put him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him. The next day, he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper, saying, ‘Take good care of him. If you spend more than that, I’ll repay you when I come back.’ “Of these three men, who do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of the bandits?” He said, “The one who showed mercy to him.” Jesus told him, “Go and do what he did,” (Luke 10:30-37, ISV).
When the expert of religious law asked Jesus how he could have life everlasting, Jesus replied with a simple question, what do the old laws teach? The man then went on to quote Deuteronomy chapter 6 (you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind. And you must love your neighbor as yourself). Then the expert of religious law even took it a step further and asked Jesus who his neighbor was. When hearing this man’s reply, Jesus told him the parable of the good Samaritan that I shared with you all today.
There is a lot of life applications to this parable if you read it closely. To the bandits in the world, they exploited and hurt vulnerable people. To the priest, this hurt man was an object to avoid. To the temple assistant, the man lying on the road was a mere object of curiosity and never meant to help. However, to the hated Samaritan treated the vulnerable man with true love. Now which one of these people are you?
This story embodies the basic principles of loving your neighbor. When reading this parable, I have developed three main points I would like to share with everyone today. First, it is extremely easy to justify not helping someone in need, and this is never the right thing to do. Secondly, our neighbors are not just the people we know or have been raised around. Our neighbor is every human being in this world regardless of their race or religion. Just because someone has different beliefs than you, does not mean you cannot show them love and mercy. Lastly, to truly love someone, you need to act when they are in need. There is never a good reason to not help someone in need. If you fail to do this, you have failed to love your neighbor in the eyes of the Lord.
Now applying this principle is easy in theory and may even be easy for some (at least they will say that). However, I have seen too many Christians’ walk by someone that was hurt and vulnerable. The justification they tell themselves goes something like “someone else will help them.” But what if God put you there to help that person in need? What if God was testing you to see if you would honor Him?
There are many reasons why you can justify not helping someone, but Jesus teaches us one simple reason to help those in need. The reason is that it honors our Heavenly Father. There should be nothing else said after this simple lesson Jesus was teaching that religious expert. That very lesson applies to our everyday lives.
Now that we have identified our neighbor thanks to Jesus’ parable, go forth and help them like Jesus commanded the expert of religious law. Jesus was not teaching this parable so people can wait to help someone when the time comes. He was teaching us to go and cross the road! Seek out those who is hurt and vulnerable and show them love and compassion when others just walk away.
I finish this devotional with one simple question, if you were hurt and vulnerable, wouldn’t you want someone to help you like the good Samaritan would in Jesus’ parable?
Have a blessed day y’all!
It is written, “So Jesus told those Jews who had believed in him, “If you continue in my word, you are really my disciples. And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” They replied to him, “We are Abraham’s descendants and have never been slaves to anybody. So how can you say, ‘You will be set free’?” Jesus answered them, “Truly, I tell all of you emphatically, that everyone who commits sin is a slave of sin. The slave does not remain in the household forever, but the son does remain forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed!” (John 8:31-36, ISV).
From Jesus’ teachings, we can easily deduct that sin has a way of not only enslaving us, but controlling us as well. This slavery or bondage, keeps us from becoming the people that our Heavenly Father wants us to be. Jesus is the only person that can set you free as it is written in John 8:36. If you find yourself a slave to sin, turn to the one who paid the price for us to be able to live in righteousness (1 Peter 2:24, ISV). However, remember that this freedom is not for us to continue doing whatever we want, but freedom to follow God.
You see, if we seek to serve our Heavenly Father, Jesus’ truth can set us free from our slavery to sin. By holding on to this principle, we are able to gather strength in Jesus when satan himself is trying to tempt us. So please remember this if you feel stuck in sin. There is always a way back into the truth and the light and that is in Jesus Christ!
As Jesus said, “I am the light of the world. The one who follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life,” (John 8:12, ISV).
I just wanted to give an update about our stay in Panguitch, Utah. As many of you know, our RV got a flat a couple of weeks ago and it did some extensive damage to our rig. We went from going to visit Bryce Canyon National Park and Zion National Park for a couple of day to having to wait for three weeks for parts to fix the RV. Even though we had some hardship, we received many more blessings.
First of all, we stayed in Hitch-N-Post Campground. My family and I really enjoyed our stay here, but what made it better was the hospitality of the owner Randy. He and his staff went above and beyond to help us with anything we needed. It was truly a humbling experience to know that there are people out there like him. As you all know, I have never recommended a campground before, but I am now. If you are wanting to visit the national attractions in this area, this is the place you want to stay at.
We will be leaving tomorrow morning and we will be sad. Thanks to Randy and his staff, we were able to find all the local attractions that we missed the last time we were here. I will share some of the amazing pictures below.
I want to thank everyone for your prayers because they worked. This comes to show us all that no matter what happens to us, our perspective determines our outcome. Will we be angry and stressed, or will be accept things for what they are? Everything happens for a reason and we must always remember that.
It is written, “There is a season for everything, and a time for every event under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to uproot what was planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to tear down, and a time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; a time to scatter stones, and a time to gather stones; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; a time to search, and a time to give up searching; a time to keep, and a time to discard; a time to tear, and a time to mend; a time to be silent, and a time to speak; a time to love, and a time to hate; a time for war, and a time for peace,” (Ecclesiastes 3:1-8, ISV).
By remembering this scripture, when something happens that we do not expect, remember that God chose for it to happen for a reason. Maybe it could be to build new relationships with people (like it was in my case), or maybe something really good is coming down the pipeline and you need to be reminded to humble yourself before the Lord. Remember, we should praise and worship our Heavenly Father in both the good times and the bad!
“You will be hated by everyone because of my name. But the person who endures to the end will be saved. So when they persecute you in one town, flee to the next, because I tell all of you with certainty that you will not have gone through the towns of Israel before the Son of Man comes.”
Perseverance is a product of being fully devoted to Jesus Christ. It is not a means of salvation, however, it shows others by our actions who and what we stand for.
In a world full of idol worshipers and fornicators, of course, we as disciples of Jesus Christ will be persecuted! Since we are called to be different and not to conform to this world (Romans 12:2), of course we are going to stand out. We are not to conform to societies ideas of right or wrong. We have the scriptures to tell us how to live our lives.
If we get picked on or bullied, it is OK! Jesus warned us of this very thing. Not only that, Jesus gave us additional words of encouragement. He said, “everyone that endures will be saved!” What amazing words to hold on to when we feel beat down in this world for not conforming.
So if anyone of you out there feel persecuted or are dealing with a bully, take this lesson Jesus is teaching us to heart and take comfort in his words. Also, remember what Jesus told us about those who accept him as the messiah. These are additional words are given to us for strength when we feel weak.
“Therefore, everyone who acknowledges me before people I, too, will acknowledge before my Father in heaven.”
I pray that God blesses each and everyone of you. May you persevere over all the prosecutions we must deal with in this world. Just remember, we are never alone. We have Jesus and fellow believers to lean on for times of weakness.