July 10, 2013 - In our morning devotional reading my wife and I have been working through the book Love and Respect by Emerson Eggerichs.
Why, you might ask, when you have a good marriage? Resources like this can strengthen what is already there.
This book reminds me that I look at things from a male perspective and she looks at them from a female perspective. While that might seem obvious it is something we often ignore.
Maybe, if we did not ignore this, there would be more solid marriages and fewer divorces in our world.
Between July first and July fifth I will be attending our church body's National Youth Gathering.
One of the first questions I am often asked when I tell people this, and where it is, is why anyone would want to go to San Antonio in July. (But it is a dry heat!)
The second question is why I would want to spend a week with 25,000 youth.
My answer to the first question is that I am going there because that is where the Gathering is.
There are many people hurting in San Antonio and we will have an opportunity to reach out to them and share the love of God that we have received in Christ Jesus.
I am reminded of God's Word recorded in 1 John 4, 9 In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent His only Son into the world, so that we might live through Him. 10 In this is love, not that we have loved God but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. 11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. (ESV)
Here is our opportunity to share God's love with San Antonio!
Imagine the impact of 25,000 youth on a city. Imagine the impact of them sharing the love of God in Christ Jesus!
They gather under the theme LiveLove(d) from verse nine of the above passage. There were Christian growth opportunities and many servant events as those youth impacted the lives of individuals, reaching out, sharing the love of God.
Is that not what we, as Christians, are to do? We are to live loved and share the love we have received. St. Paul reminds us in Romans 5:8 that God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (ESV)
How many feel unloved? How many feel lost? How many are hurting?
Take the time in the coming days to share God's love and compassion with them. Ask how you might help. Maybe all they need is someone to listen.
Remind them they are important, that Jesus died so they might live—loved—forever.
Is it easy? Sometimes, but not always, but, we might remember, Jesus did not take the easy way out, He took the cross for us.
Take a little time to share His love!
The Rev. Kendall Schaeffer is pastor of St. Trinity Lutheran Church.