December 7, 2008
Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. 1 John 4:7
I wonder how the bears are doing in Yellowstone Park... now that the weather is cold.
Do you think that is a strange way to begin a devotion? Well, it probably is.
Allow me to explain. Many years ago, when we were in Yellowstone for a family vacation, I talked to a ranger about the "Do Not Feed the Bears" signs, which are all over the park.
He told me, "Sir, tourists like you have only a small part of the picture." Then, he described, how in the winter, the park service personnel end up carting away the bodies of dead bears; bears who had, because of handouts from tourists, lost their ability to fend for food.
That was sad.
Still, it's not nearly as tragic as watching people who are starving for forgiveness, love, and hope.
Right now, the shopping malls are packed with people; during rush hour our city highways snap into a slow-motion gridlock.
Even so, there are many people who are isolated and desperately alone. They are hungry to have someone say, "I love you."
Thankfully, saying, "I care" is what Jesus does for each and every one of us. He enters this world to fix things so sin can no longer isolate us from our Father; so death cannot separate us permanently from our heavenly home; so we will always have a Friend to hear our thoughts and help us carry our burdens.
Because of Jesus' life, death, and resurrection, no one ever need starve to death spiritually or emotionally.
This is something each of us, at one time or another, needs to remember: in Christ, we will be fed forever.
From a devotion originally written for "By the Way"
THE PRAYER: Dear God, thank You for Your ever-present love which comes to us in the Savior Allow us to share Him with the many people all around us who are spiritually starving. I ask it in the name of my Redeemer and eternal Friend, Jesus. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries