(Jesus said) "The second is this: 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' There is no other commandment greater than these." Mark 12:31
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ:
The salvation story of Jesus Christ reaches around the world. So that the readers of our Daily Devotion may see the power of the Savior on a global scale, we have asked the volunteers of our International Ministry Centers to write our Friday devotions. We pray that the Spirit may touch your day through their words.
In Christ, I remain, His servant and yours,
Kenneth R. Klaus
Speaker Emeritus of The Lutheran Hour
In this Bible passage our Lord Jesus was emphasizing the important aspect of love.
Our God has called us as His own children because He loved us. Once we were in the darkness and we did so many things against Him, yet He loved us by sending His only Son, Jesus Christ, to die for our sins on the cross and to give us a new life and a new hope.
At times, some Christians only think about themselves. Unfortunately, they often fail to think about the lost ones around them. God's love is for all humankind of this world, and we are called to be Christians to serve others and to live for others. God is expecting from us to show His love to others by our deeds. This worldly life is not eternal, and we are living here temporarily.
We often forget this, and God is reminding us of this through His words.
The reason is Satan does not like the repentance of a sinner. We are experiencing this in our ministry in Sri Lanka as we carry out the message of Christ to the unchurched in our country. We thank God for sending His Holy Spirit to use us to reach the lost ones in our country, through various programs.
One of those programs has been especially blessed in reaching the tea plantation people. In these company towns and neighborhoods, we use street dramas, which incorporate the Gospel message in an interesting and different way. Last year, in October, we performed this type of drama in upcountry, and nearly 300 people were gathered to watch these dramas eagerly.
The story we acted out was that of an old man who was carrying a heavy burden as a result of his sins. We showed how he sought advice from several people. No one was able to give him the correct answer on how to get relief from his sinful, heavy laden burden. Finally, the Lord sent a pastor to give the man the right message.
The minister explained how God sent his only begotten Son to die on the cross to empty the load of sins from our lives.
Before we have a prayer after the performance, we take the opportunity to explain the most important parts of our faith. In simple terms we explain how much God loves, cares and forgives a sinner, even if he or she had committed a murder, or adultery, etc.
This time a person came forward asking our team to pray for him.
With tears he told us that he had, a few years ago, committed murder and had spent time in prison. Indeed, he had just been released. Though the man had been set free from jail, his heart was without peace. We prayed for the man, and God touched his heart.
If the Lord allows, we will share that same message with the millions of others around us whose hearts are without the peace and joy that Christians know. It is a great responsibility and opportunity, which we have been given in this mission.
We rejoice that the Lord has entrusted us to share His love with those around us who have many similarities with the person whose story I have just shared.
THE PRAYER: Our Heavenly Father, we thank You for Your love towards us. Help us share that love with our neighbors and all whom You give to us. In Jesus' Name I ask it. Amen.
Biography of Author: Today's international devotion was written by: Mr. S. Sathiyabalan who is director of the Lutheran Hour Ministries office in Sri Lanka. In Sri Lanka, we are known as Lanka Hope Media. There we have been proclaiming the Savior's Good News through radio programming, Bible Correspondence Courses (BCC), and dramas since 2001.
In this island nation of more than 20 million people off the southern tip of India, Lutheran Hour Ministries-Sri Lanka is known as Lanka Hope Media. Relying on staff and volunteers, LHM-Sri Lanka distributes Gospel-related material to thousands, employing literature displays and rallies. Using BCC in Sinhalese and Tamil, this ministry center teaches people essential truths of Scripture they can use in their everyday lives. Additionally, puppet shows, youth-oriented concerts, and video screenings are used to promote Bible courses, and devotional songs and short sermons are offered. Equipping the Saints (ETS) workshops are used to strengthen local groups of believers and help foster outreach efforts. Use of the Internet and e-mail are helping LHM-Sri Lanka share the Gospel as this technology is becoming more widely available throughout the country. To connect with people on cell phones, automated messaging is proving helpful in reaching the unchurched.
You can read about the student gathering in Sri Lanka, by clicking here to visit its blog.
To learn more about our International Ministries, click here or visit www.lhm.org/international.
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries
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