Wellspring Devotion, Oct. 21, 2014

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Psalm 100:3-4-Know that the Lord, he is God! It is He who made us, and we are His; we are His people, and the sheep of His pasture. Enter His gates with thanksgiving, and His courts with praise! Give thanks to Him; bless His name!

As we look around us we have so much to be thankful for. Even in dark days, we must keep our focus on God and remember that He made us for a very special purpose! This is reason to get excited and step outside our comfort zone and give our praises to Him. This past Sunday at the church we attend, we had brothers and sisters in Christ from the Karen community in Worthington visit our church and perform a song. It was so moving to hear the Karen pastor tell the history of the Karen people who now live in Burma and about the many refugees who have come to the United States. Hearing their struggles with slavery and oppression throughout history really made me realize how much we take for granted here in this country. The young man who introduced the song they were going to sing, said they have often been discriminated against and treated like animals.

They sang the song in the Karen language and it sounded so beautiful. The words to the song in English were shown on the big screen so we knew what the words meant. Part of the song talked about how they had been treated like animals and then it goes on to tell how we are all free in Christ and He is the only one who can give us hope. We did not need the words on the screen to tell when they were singing the praises to God. They were singing with so much passion and emotion, I could not help but hum along. And when the song was over, I was wishing they could continue singing more songs. I think I could have listened to them for hours.

God wants us to give Him praises and thanksgiving always! Even amongst the struggles of slavery, oppression and discrimination, He wants us to be a light to others and let our hope in Him be known. There is so much diversity all around us and God wants us to love our neighbors and brothers and sisters in Christ, He even wants us to show love to those who do not know Him. Having people from other parts of the world come to our church this month and preach and sing praises to God has been such a blessing. Their passion and love for the Lord are contagious.

Prayer for the week: Dear Lord, Help us to remember to praise your name always—in the hard times and in the really happy times. Thank you for all of your wonderful blessings. As we go throughout this week, we pray specifically that you will help us see the needs of those around us so we can be a bright spot and show your love to others. Let us not forget that we have many brothers and sisters in Christ to love. In Your name we pray. Amen.

Discussion questions:

How can we show love to a neighbor this week?

How can we get out of our comfort zone this week and show God’s love to others?