“Sup bro” (or sis) – is our South African hello this month, to which you might answer, “What say, what say.”
eTouch is a cybric loveletter, something to spice up your day with encouragement, challenge and hope . . . with the flavor of the Fruit of the Spirit. Even though eTouch is a YWAM-y thing, all are welcome.
The Horrible Parable
So, there was this king who was very, very wealthy; so wealthy in fact, that he actually loaned money to the citizens of his kingdom. Unlike some kings (you know, credit card companies kind of think of themselves as kings), our king was a kindly king and it seems like he only charged a small amount of interest on the money he lent to people.
But as with all loans, there were time limits. Most everybody who borrowed money from him had a plan and used the money wisely; they only bought sensible things like a house that would normally increase in value; and then they repaid their loan on time.
One day the king decided it was time to call in the loans he had made. Things went along pretty well until it was brought to his attention that one guy (let’s call him Sam), owed millions and millions of dollars, but did not have any way to repay him. Sam had probably blown the money on partying and gambling and buying expensive things that he really didn’t need.
The king was not happy. Realizing that Sam was a deadbeat, he ordered that he be sold as a slave. Down on his face fell Sam, begging for mercy, crying and blubbering and carrying on. “Just be patient with me Your Majesty! I’ll pay you back everything I owe you,” he mewled, as he groveled in the dust.
Knowing full well that repayment was not about to happen, the king, because he was a kindly and compassionate king, decided to forgive Sam’s whole debt! Can you believe it? Zillions of dollars, washed clean away as though the loan never happened. Wow! Talk about a time to be grateful – this dope should have been the happiest man in the world.
Sam, who had just tasted mercy and was rolling it around deliciously on his tongue, was about to spit out some sickening injustice. Even though this terrible burden had been lifted off his back, Sam was so cunning that in his heart he probably chuckled to himself, “Old kingy’s a softy to let me off the hook. I would never forgive a debt like that.”
And sure enough he wouldn’t. He remembered that he’d loaned about ten bucks – ten measly dollars – to his neighbor, so lickety-split he rushed off to the unsuspecting man, grabbed him by the throat and yelled, “Give me my ten bucks or you’re off to the slammer!” The poor guy, unable to repay the debt, fell on his knees and begged for mercy and for a couple of more weeks to get the money.
“No way José” (for that was his neighbor’s name), “I want it now, N-O-W, pronto!” Already down on his luck, poor José was marched off to the pokey. But some of the other neighbors had seen all this and got so upset they went to the king and told him what Sam had done. The king was not amused.
In fact he was SO not amused that he made him pay his debt in horrible ways, too horrible to describe here, all because of Sam’s unmerciful and unforgiving heart.
If you think that Sam’s tale of woe is just about forgiving financial debts, it’s not. It’s really about mercy and forgiveness. (BTW, you can read the original version of poor Sam’s downfall in Matthew 18:21-35). When we pray as Jesus asked us to, “Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors,” we’re asking for forgiveness in any and all areas of life where we may need it.
How can we learn from this story, so that we don’t end up like Sam?
- If we’re unmerciful, we’re likely to be unforgiving.
- Forgiveness and mercy are like getting something for nothing. Gratitude and mercy toward others are good paybacks though.
- The more we’re forgiven, the more grateful and forgiving we should be to others.
- Forgiveness is always an act of grace.
Poor Sam . . . Poor Sam nothing! He got as good as he gave. But not one of us can gloat. Only Jesus is the perfect forgiver.
Till next time, 70×7,
[You might want to read this sorry saga of Sam to your kids or your grandkids or someone else’s kids. Little children understand the difference between bad and good, sometimes even than better older people.]
You cannot love a fellow-creature fully till you love God
C.S. Lewis in The Great Divorce
The battle is won or lost in the heart
Attitude is everything – our life is determined by our attitude
We tend to create ‘theology’ around past disappointments
Success is not who I am, but who we are
When the heat comes, what sort of fragrance do you give off?
This ‘n That
We love your encouraging responses to eTouch – keep ’em coming!
We really like eTouch, especially the recent one! We can certainly relate to your article on honour, and the lack of it generally. Fred Warkentin, BC
Thank you Fred, and all who wrote encouraging emails. Here’s a thought-provoker . . .
Hi! Always appreciate your eTouch messages. I’m not a Bible scholar, but I would like to offer a point of correction: Hitler was not made in the image of God. Please see Genesis 5:3 for anyone who came after the fall, including Hitler. This substantiates the importance of and great need for God’s purpose to be fulfilled as expressed in Romans 8:29-30. By His grace and to the glory of His Name, always wrapped in His love. Jim in Washington
Thank you for writing… you give me food for thought. I’m glad that you have written about something that you disagree with. Makes me stop and think. Let me ponder your position and consult some of our learned friends out there. Anyone game to jump in?
Many Blessings, Peter
The Last Thing I’d Ever Do by Peter Jordan
It was wonderful, open, honest and funny.
David Garratt, Scripture in Song
I read it cover to cover, just finished minutes ago. Great read! What a life of faith. What miracles of God.
Neal Pirolo, Emmaus Road International
A great read on a couple of getaway days.
Marie Goode, Leader, Mercy Ministries
It was a joy on a rainy day to curl up on the sofa with your book. How it brought back memories and feelings, laughter and longing. I’d read some nugget of gold and think to myself, I’ll be quoting that down the road. Thank you for blessing the body of Christ with this gift.
Barb Nizza, Leader, YWAM Ozarks
Want it? Click on the book in Marie’s hand and search for “The Last Thing . . .
The Liar, The Thief & The Accuser
Jesus said, “The thief comes only to steal, kill and destroy;” but He’s come to give us life more abundantly. Sometimes we forget the warfare we’re in. The last two months Peter and I have been aware of the warfare, and how the enemy tries to steal our identity as God’s children, His heirs; and can also steal from us our joy, peace and our finances.
At the end of the All Nations-All Generations DTS in Kona, when we were preparing for outreach, 73 passports with Chinese visas went missing on their way back to Kona from the China Consulate. We knew what to do. 90 of us came together to worship, pray and walk together as a family, listening to our Father. We realized that the enemy was trying to steal our identity and bring confusion and fear.
The passports were never found and almost everyone reached the destination that God had directed them to. The enemy did not win! Hours of work and thousands of extra dollars had to be spent but lives were saved, healed and delivered. That’s what the Kingdom is all about. Jesus said, “Seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness and everything else will be given to you.”
In the last month Peter and I have been going through the strangest time with “lost checks.” Not only checks that people have sent to us but checks we’ve sent to help others. We even started to accuse one another, until yesterday we stopped and said, “God, what is going on?” He replied, “You are in warfare and the enemy is out to rob you and lie to you. Ohhhh! Then we knew what to do; we stood against the enemy in Jesus’ name and asked for wisdom, peace and joy (Ephesians 5:10-18).
How did the enemy accuse? Mostly through thoughts like, “You’re getting old and forgetful.” That’s not true, because the check we sent got lost too. So it must have been through our own voices, “You had it last; or you need to be more careful.” That’s not true, because we’re both very careful and good stewards of what God gives us. We make mistakes, but there were five different situations within two weeks.
So dear friends, be aware of the enemy’s tactics. We ARE in warfare; sometimes it’s subtle, and other times it’s obvious. Before you accuse one another, become anxious and fearful, do what Jesus said and Paul emphasized.
Walk in humility, truth, love, faith, righteousness and peace. Pray at all times in the Spirit, speak the Word of God and be alert. Let’s remember to pray for each other and not judge, but be still, wait on God and have the mind of Christ.”
Love and Blessings,
July 25-30: Norway (Skjærgårdsheimen), with Mark & Jill Herringshaw. Still space for tents & campers, otherwise waitlist only.
Contact: Lidvard Andreassen – firstname.lastname@example.org
Aug 7-13: France (Le Gault la Forêt) Champagne region, near Paris, with Daniel Schaerer, former YWAM France Director: “Our Destiny in God.” HURRY! Just a few places remaining.
Aug 18-21: Switzerland (Burtigny) near Geneva, with Eliane Lack.
French & Swiss Camps: www.ywamassociates.eu
Aug 29-31: Germany (at YWAM Hainichen) an weekend, dinner Friday until lunch Sunday.
Formless registration: email@example.com
Nov 17-21: Singapore Renewal Gathering. More information next month.
And Finally . . . The Good News
Evangelism is one beggar telling another beggar where to get bread.
Peter Jordan, Editor
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