“Sawadee” is the gracious greeting from Thailand that we extend to you. So, here comes this month’s loveletter . . . and we begin with a wonderful welcome to some new faces.
Mark & Jill Herringshaw are re-joining YWAM full time as Coordinators for YWAM Associates North America. For many years they pastored in Minneapolis/St Paul after spending three years in the 1980s with YWAM Cambridge in Canada. Mark & Jill have four children, Emily, Elisabeth, Matthew & Michael. Emily (NYC) and Elisabeth (South Africa), have both completed a DTS.
The Road Less Littered
The title of this little piece is lifted from Scott Peck’s, “The Road Less Travelled,” a book I highly recommend. The author found Jesus while writing the book, and in it he basically reminds us that life is difficult and that we all seem to be born with a tendency to try and avoid the difficulties that we face.
A few months back we discussed the merits of walking as physical exercise. Early on in life we learn to walk, then we walk to school (well, at least we used to); we walk with close friends, we eventually walk away from Mom & Dad, we may get married and walk hand-in-hand with our spouse, and then finally, we walk our last step.
We ‘walk’ through this life on an imaginary road, and we pretty much get to choose its direction. So, all of life is a walk – though not always a ‘walk in the park!’
But there can be a downside to our walk through life.
We can walk away from the responsibilities and friendships of life: we can walk away from an education or a job; we can walk out on a husband or wife, not to mention the children.
And of course like Jonah, we can walk away from God. Or try to.
There’s another kind of walk that really troubles me and that’s when we walk over and on the people we know. This usually comes because of our need to have power and control, or maybe from our own insecurity. This insecurity can be found in almost anyone, and it becomes harmful when we walk over or on others in order to get things done.
Let’s be honest with ourselves. It’s good for all of us to look back over our shoulder at our own meandering ‘road of relationships,’ and remember the people we have known and walked with; the ones we have been close to, broken up with and hurt. How many of them are happily waving blessings at us now? Is less road less littered because you maintained good relationships?
Or do numbers of hurting people lie littered along that trail that stretches out behind you? It may not be too late to do something about them.
How can I measure my own score on the ‘road of relationships’? Can I say that I love God whom I have not seen, if I do not love my brother (or sister), whom I have seen? (1 John 4:20)
The singular, defining mark of a follower of Jesus is love. And love can only be defined in terms of our everyday relationships. Love is forgiveness. Love is seeing the image of God in others. Love is . . .
May your ‘roadies’ rise up and bless you,
Some Choice Ones by Sir Winston Churchill
[Looking for deep spiritual insights? Better skip these.]
An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.
Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference.
A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.
We make a living by what we get, but we make a life with what we give.
Difficulties mastered are opportunities won.
Eating words has never given me indigestion.
Ending a sentence with a preposition is something up with which I will not put.
I am always ready to learn although I do not always like being taught.
I am an optimist. It does not seem too much use being anything else.
I am certainly not one of those who need to be prodded. In fact, if anything, I am the prod.
I am easily satisfied with the very best.
The Greatest in the Kingdom . . .
. . . is the Servant. Is that right?
I love it when Jesus says, “You who have ears to hear, listen to what the Spirit is saying . . . If we listen to Him we will obey because listening is with the heart. It’s a heart attitude. One of the last things Jesus did was to wash the disciples’ feet and cook them breakfast! Paul says that our attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus. (Phil 2:5-11)
Jesus said, “If anyone wants to be first, he must be the very last, and the servant of all.” (Mark 9:35)
Again, Jesus said, “Whoever wants to be great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all.” (Mark 10: 43-44)
Jesus continued in this passage by saying, “Just as the Son of man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many.” (Matt 20:26-28) Sooooo?
I was just at the World Gathering of Christian Indigenous People – they are the ‘First Peoples’ from all over the world, and it was hosted by the Maori of New Zealand. Monte Ohia, who went home to be with Jesus very suddenly in 2008, was one of the founders of this movement. His wife Linda and her sons and daughter hosted this last one near Hamilton, New Zealand. It was a blessing to be invited; a true privilege.
The Ohia family is an example of serving and loving and also recoginzing others who serve. During the whole conference, other than Jesus, only one woman was recognized and honored. She had been serving in the kitchen and wherever needed. It was a shock to her, but what was so precious, was when she went to receive a very special stone that a young Maori donated, her whole family and people went to the stage and stood with her. No competing, or comparing just rejoicing with their family and friend who had been honored.
A serving attitude starts in the home. I’ve learned so much from our Samoan family who teach their children from a early age to honor and serve, even when they don’t feel like it. It becomes a way of life. Our adopted Samoan son Ieru is the recognized leader of Island Breeze International, but he is one of the greatest servants, and I’ve never heard him complain about serving. He is always looking for ways to serve – he just does it.
My husband Peter also has a servant’s heart. And I want to have more of one. I want to be more like Jesus in that way too.
Love and Blessings,
July 25-30: Norway (Skjærgårdsheimen) near Kristiansand
Aug 7-13: France (Le Gault la Forêt) Champagne region, near Paris, with Daniel Schaerer – “Our Destiny in God”
Aug 18-21: Switzerland (Burtigny) near Geneva, with Eliane Lack
For more info: www.ywamassociates.eu
And Finally . . .
Never concede to doing something so small that it could be accomplished entirely in your lifetime.
Dr Ralph Winter (Founder, US Center for World Mission)
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