If you don't keep up with the news, you are missing out on some interesting stuff. Apparently, God had a wife... but the details were edited out of the Bible by the men who wrote it. Sammy Hager (former Van Halen lead singer) was abducted by aliens. There is no Hell, according to Bob Bell, the minister at the Mars Hill Bible Church, in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Barry Bonds thought the steroids he was receiving was flax seed oil. Really? I mean, REALLY? Balderdash! (word was used last Sunday in worship assembly and I am now dedicated to using this word as much as I can) Oh, and Madonna's plans to build a school for girls in Malawi is over before it ever got started. It seems the $3.8 million that was donated is gone without a piece of land purchased, a brick laid... just outlandish expenditures on salaries, cars, and golf course memberships for the "handpicked" staff. Balderdash! (Can you imagine what TORCH could do with $3.8 million?)
On the other hand, good news is out there. You just have to look for it. sometimes you have to look for it really hard. Most of you know I am a die hard Alabama fan. I bleed Crimson. Well, I guess everyone bleeds crimson, but I bleed with a capital C. Anyways, Alabama football is a pretty big deal to me and I try to follow the news on the team, players, coaches, etc. I mean, after all, I live in a men's dorm with guys from Texas, Alabama, Tennessee, Florida, Ohio, Wisconsin, California, South Carolina, Mississippi, Georgia... when trash talk starts up you better know your stuff. I pretty much live for this ya know!
So, I read an article that really caught my attention. And it had nothing to do with bench presses, 40 yard dashes, or agility drills. It was a story about some Alabama football players and how they spent their spring break. With head lines the way they are these days, if you hear college students and spring break in the same sentence, you are about to read something that is not for the faint of heart. Some of the things that go on during spring break around the country is not suitable to be written, especially in this blog. But not so fast, not all news is bad... or shocking. Sometimes news is positive and uplifting... you just have to read about it in the middle of the paper for this rarely makes front page news.
The main character of the article was Barrett Jones, one of my favorite players for the Crimson Tide. Barrett is a junior offensive lineman for the tide, and a big man on campus. I mean, he really is big. 6'5" and 311 pounds big. All SEC, All American big. National championship ring big. He is a big man with a big heart. Last year Barrett went on a mission trip to Haiti during spring break to do earthquake relief. He flew into the Dominican Republic and then took a 6 hour Jeep ride into Haiti to work with other teammates and classmates in a variety of projects. It made such an impact that this year he went back with more players and a larger group (31 total) including his younger brother and mom and dad. For spring break this year they worked with construction of a school, worked at an orphanage, and worked in a feeding kitchen to feed the hungry. Spring break was more like spring work, especially knowing that spring football practice was starting up as soon as he got back to Tuscaloosa. But he said he wouldn't trade the experience for anything. "You go over there and see someone who literally has nothing, who lives under a tin roof in a mud hut... it really puts things in perspective as to how fortunate we are."
Sounds familiar, doesn't it? How many of us have said the very same thing? We might not be All American football players or even people that even get press time for what we do, but we are all in this together. Helping others. Helping those who are hurting. Helping those who are down trodden. Helping those whose lives have been shattered. Helping those who cannot help themselves. Providing food. Providing water. Providing shoes. Providing clothes. Providing medicine. Giving hope. Giving mercy. Giving peace. Giving ourselves. Giving Jesus. Not because we have to, but because we want to... answering the call that God gave when He said, "Who will go?" "Here am I, send me! Lord, send me!"
Many are answering the call. Many are putting on their traveling shoes. It won't be long till it will be time to pack our bags, grab our passports, and roll up our sleeves. I can almost smell the diesel fumes, feel the saw dust on my neck, and taste the papusas . I can almost hear the laughter from the children and see those big brown eyes. If this is your first trip, it won't be long till you will be saying the same things. For those who are not going this year, you are feeling the withdrawal pains. Many are called but few will answer. Yet God will take those which are brought before Him, and will bless us, and will use us, to do His good will. And in all things He will receive the glory and honor. We are His chosen vessels. God has prepared good works for us to do, and we are lucky and fortunate enough to be a part of it! How cool is that!
"But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear." I Peter 3:15 We worship a might God. We serve a glorious Savior.
"O, what a glorious God! O, what a powerful Savior! All creation cries out around You, holy is the Lord. O, what a glorious God! O, what a powerful Savior! Mercy , grace, and goodness surround You, o-oh what a glorious God, o-ho, what a glorious God!
You speak with a voice like a crashing cymbol, o-oh, what a glorious God! You stretch forth Your hand and the whole world tembles, o-oh, what a glorious God.
Your rose from the dead to redeem Your people, o-oh, what a glorious God! You give us strength and we soar like eagles, o-oh, what a glorious God!
O, what a glorious God! O, what a powerful Savior! All creation cries out around You, holy is the Lord. O, what a glorious God! O, what a powerful Savior! Mercy, grace, and goodness surround You, 0-oh, what a glorious God, o-oh, what a glorious God!" Don Moen