We were in Victoria, Mexico on an evangelistic mission trip for Lifeline. The weather changed and all of a sudden, we had rain and 30° temperature. We were not prepared for cold weather and they had no heat in the hotel or in the churches. I remember taking the rug off the floor and using it for a blanket and even then I shook with cold all night.
We were holding services at several churches in and around Victoria. I sent part of the team to a little house church about four miles out of town. They picked up the team in their car and took them to the church where about 40 people were gathered in this little house. It was wall-to-wall people and they were praising God with enthusiasm. A lady was leading the service and she was doing a wonderful job. She would testify a little and then lead them in singing. You could tell that she was the leader of that church group and that the people responded to her with excitement. When the service was over she very quickly disappeared while the team was visiting with various members of the congregation. Finally the team loaded back into the car to drive to another service in town. It was pouring down rain and was very, very cold.
About two miles toward town they spotted the lady who led the service. She was walking the four miles back to town to be at the other service. She was soaking wet and walking fast to help her stay warm. The pastor pulled the car over to offer her a ride but she refused. She said, "I'm soaking wet and you have a car full. I'd have to sit on someone's lap and that would get them wet. You go ahead, I'll be there very soon and join you for the service. It won't take me long to walk the two miles." With that said, she proceeded to quickly begin the rest of her walk to town.
As the car pulled away from her, one of our team members said, "You know, God ought to provide a car for that lady. She's such a great servant of God--she deserves a car and shouldn't have to walk in the rain to serve Him." The pastor, who was driving, turned around and spoke to the team member, saying "You don't understand. You are riding in her car!"
GospeLines Prayer:Father, just when I thought I knew about love, you surprise me with something like this!I am grateful that you have shown me how it hurts when others will not love You back, but now I want to boldly ask you to teach me how to love others until it hurts me, too.
≈ Devotional for Tuesday, December 23, 2008
Hundreds of anxious volunteers reverently awaited the arrival of a huge 18-wheeler, filled with fresh Christmas wreaths adorned with bright red bows. Oblivious to the morning chill and blanket of snow, they made their way through the sacred field of bleached white headstones, carefully laying a wreath at the foot of each one.
One man’s effort and initiative has inspired so many.
Fifteen years ago, with a handful of people by comparison, Merrill Worcester, owner of Worcester Wreath Co. in Harrington, Maine, decided to decorate 5,000 headstones at Arlington National Cemetery - a small and meaningful gesture to those who fought and died for us.One man’s commitment to honor those who sacrificed for us is an awesome sight.Those green wreaths and red bows against the stark white marble headstones provide quite a contrast.(To learn more about this project, click on this link: http://www.wreathsacrossamerica.org)
I am reminded that one person can make a difference!
As we wait expectantly for the arrival of the Christ-child, God’s gift will make a tremendous difference in our lives if we only believe.He is quietly amongst us and lives in each of us.
As we approach Christmas and the New Year, instead of the usual gifts and resolutions, let us consider finding a way to make a real and tangible difference in someone else’s life.
Perhaps Gandhi said it best, “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”
When all the gifts have been opened and put away,
When the magic of the moment is gone…
Let us be reminded every day
That giving of ourselves lives on…
Let us create or seek those opportunities to give,
So that with You in us, we may truly live!
Small gestures can make a big difference!
In His love,
GospeLines will be "Off-the Air" from December 24 through January 4th.
Have a blessed Christmas and a New Year in Christ. We'll see you on the 5th!