The Ripple Effect!

25 02 2016

RIPPLES

I was just beginning my first Summer in North America. I had been attending Bible College in Seattle, Washington and the plans called for me to spend the Summer traveling in Canada and Northwest United States as an intern with two Lutheran pastors who had an itinerant ministry.
The first event was to take a bus from Seattle into Canada and meet them at this Camp and be a camp speaker for the youth. I took the bus and was dropped off at the bus station of my destination. But I did not realize that my camp was a good thirty miles away, and the nearest town was about three miles away. Here I was with my luggage and clueless how to get to camp.
One of the men who was working at the garage, which doubled as a bus station, offered to take me into town, as he was getting off work in a little while. As he drove me into town, he said since I was going to be at a Christian camp, maybe someone at the church would know more details. He took me for breakfast (a complete stranger) and dropped me off at the church for the service.
I was in the service, and as soon as the service was done, many people spoke to me and then one family came and invited me to their home for lunch and promised to take me to the camp where I would meet my friends. I was completely blown away by the hospitality of these strangers … but “family of God”!

What then was the ripple effect of this incident? I have never forgotten their kindness to me and have tried to be open to see a stranger, a foreigner, a lonely person and reach out to them. Didn’t Jesus say,  (Matthew 25: 34 – 36)

“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the creation of the world. 35 For I was hungry, and you fed me. I was thirsty, and you gave me a drink. I was a stranger, and you invited me into your home. 36 I was naked, and you gave me clothing. I was sick, and you cared for me. I was in prison, and you visited me.’

There are many stories of the kindness of people that I could share at this moment. But the idea of the Ripple Effect, was to be an encouragement to myself to recognize, that what I had done was not wasted, but God was going to use it for His good. And so began my spiraling ripples.

From the time I left Bible College in India, and the young people that were in the different youth groups, and where they are now. The families that they have started and the children they impact.

My fellow classmates in India and Seattle. The different people in whose homes I stayed as I traveled in Western Canada and the Midwestern states in the USA. The young people in our youth groups in ministry in Minnesota! You get the idea!

Each of them is a person created in the image of God and He brought each person into our lives, so that they can impact our lives and we can sow into their lives. What is the net result? Can we in a monetary way, evaluate the impact? Was our lives lived in vain?

                               Thanks be unto God who has in so many ways given us the victory. He is forever good!

1 Corinthians 3: 5b – 9:
Each of us did the work the Lord gave us. 6 I planted the seed in your hearts, and Apollos watered it, but it was God who made it grow. 7 It’s not important who does the planting, or who does the watering. What’s important is that God makes the seed grow. 8 The one who plants and the one who waters work together with the same purpose. And both will be rewarded for their own hard work. 9 For we are both God’s workers. And you are God’s field.





Artificial Sweetness!

21 02 2016

A couple of weeks ago, I joined a class at the YMCA called, “Eat, Move and Live Well” – A Healthy Living Program for 60+ Adults. This was a result of a doctor visit I had at the beginning of the year and the results of some ‘blood work’, which she had done on me.
The result of my visit with her ended in me doing an ECG, Chest X-ray and Stress Test. Net result was I am doing good, but my blood pressure was a little elevated and my LDL Cholesterol was high. Her recommendation involved my taking a more aggressive Statin, and being back on two blood pressure pills.
My response ofcourse was lets try a “healthy alternate” – like exercise and cut the calories eating plan! This is just the background to my ending in this class. Anyway …
In this class, the trainer had us discussing sweetened water and other drinks that would help us stay hydrated, as adequate water in our bodies is a good basis for wellness. It is one sentence that she used during this session, that triggered my thoughts for today!
She said, “When we talk of “artificial sweetners”, we are introducing something that is foreign to our “natural” bodies and we should not be taking them lightly.

” I checked the Mirriam Webster dictionary meaning of the word “artificial” and it says, ”
• 1 : humanly contrived often on a natural model : man-made <an artificial limb> <artificial diamonds>
• not natural or real : made, produced, or done to seem like something natural
• : not happening or existing naturally : created or caused by people
• : not sincere
Yes, the trainer was using a radical application of the meaning of the word, but I believe God would have us apply that to our total life and well being.
1 Corinthians 6: 19, 20 says, “Our body is the temple of the Holy Spirit …”! What are we doing to take care of our body which is the temple of the Holy Spirit, not just physically but spiritually, socially and emotionally? In Luke 2: 52 says, “Jesus grew in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and all the people”. (NLT) Jesus made it a priority in His Life to nurture the temple of the Holy Spirit, His Body!
We read the many times and occasions that He would take time to slip away and spend time in prayer – time with the Father. I believe these are the times He would be recalling the Words of scripture He had learned and memorized as a young boy, which He so ably used to have a conversation with the learned leaders in the temple when He was a young man at age 12.
He also used the words of Scripture and the reinforcement of His time spent with His Heavenly Father to be able to counter respond to the attacks of Satan who came with misquoted scripture in the wilderness to tempt Him.
What am I doing to equip my body to be a “Temple of the Holy Spirit”. What would my Spiritual Physician say is the health of my body, if I go in for a physical? Too much “artificial sweetners” in my body?
I would like to recommend two sources of helps that have been “a spiritual vitamin” to help me in my daily life. Try them, you will like them!

 

      https://www.bible.com/app

http://amzn.to/1oV3pRv

 

 

 

 

 

 





Running on Empty!

7 02 2016
PENTAX Image

PENTAX Image

Just a few days ago, I came across a Blog post that resonated with me!  Having lived and served in Sri Lanka for many years it brought back many memories of similar experiences in our travels!

But it also resonated on another level, as I thought how the price of gas in the USA has gone to below $1.50 a gallon, but are we doing this here?  Ofcourse the danger was not in the physical level but in the Spiritual level.  Are we so busy in our lives that we are ‘running on fumes’?

A shout out to “@NomadStacey” and her Blog Post!  Take a few minutes to read this!

Gas Tank

Blessings on you Stacey, as you serve HIM in the hard places of the KINGDOM!