My friend, may I ask you a question? Does God really expect me to put others before myself? What if there is a danger to myself? Do I need to weigh that and balance my mercy based first on how it will affect me? When it comes to caring, how much effort DOES God expect from you and I?
Life’s a story, welcome to This Passing Day. I'm Mark Brunner.
When was the last time that you went out of your way to do something for someone else? I'm not talking about the check that you stuck into the Heart Fund envelope recently or the friendly "wave-through" you did at the intersection, allowing another driver to turn before you did. No, I'm talking about doing something that took time and effort, time you probably didn't have and effort that may have burned a few calories in the process. We live, unfortunately, in what I often call an, I AM culture (It's About Me!). When we're so focused on our own comforts and inconveniences, it's really hard to find the time and where-with-all to spare the time and effort to care about others, let alone put them first in our lives. Besides, life is getting more and more complicated and busy all the time. Does God really expect me to put others before myself?
When it comes to caring, how much effort DOES God expect from you and I?
Here's a story: A small plane with no lights and inexperienced pilot was flying up to a little country airstrip where he tried to land before sunset. Unfortunately, he had strong winds against him and he didn't make it. Nearing the airstrip, he found he couldn't see the runway. Panic seized him as he sensed he didn't have much fuel left. The runway was not equipped with lights, and he had no way of getting in touch with anyone. He began to circle. Down on the ground, a man was sitting on his porch and thought, "That guy's in trouble." Quickly he sped over to the runway and began to drive up and down the runway with his lights on bright, up and down, showing that young, inexperienced, pilot how to find his way. The pilot turned. With a great breath of relief he began to land the plane. At the end of the runway the driver turned around and flashed his lights on the high beam and sat there, as if to say, "This is the end of the runway, and there are the lights." That pilot came right in and landed safely. A near tragedy was averted by sensitivity to need. (Author Unknown)
When people are in trouble, we need to sense their needs and be willing to help. In a sense that means we have to step out of "me" and into a "they" mindset. When we step out of ourselves, however, we become vulnerable, even open to attack. Nevertheless, when someone else is in trouble, we may be the only net they have to jump into. When that net is occupied by our own concerns and needs, there's little room for someone else's. Is there someone in your life today who needs you, all of you? Empty out your own cares and be ready to take on theirs. It may not be the most comfortable when it comes to your own happiness. But, hey, it never really was about you in the first place.
We pray. Heavenly Father, Jesus, You are the author and originator of love. We only know love because You are love and You loved us first. You love us specifically and sacrificially. You love us in our sin and rebellion against You. You love us despite the pain we inflict on others. You love us in our mess. It is that love - that selfless, self-sacrificing love, which allows us to love others. It is an overflow of Your love for us that allows us to love other people. Jesus, we ask You to make us better lovers of one another, even our enemies. We ask this in Jesus name. Amen.
Therefore my friend, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry for itself; each day has enough trouble of its own. (Matt 6:34) This Passing Day. May this passing day honor our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and be a blessing to you and everyone you meet. Find a stranger and say hello. Don't let another day pass without your day blessing someone else.
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<firstname.lastname@example.org> From Beech Springs, God bless you for Jesus sake.