Saturday, August 15, 2015

The 800 Foot Summer

It is amazing when you take what little you have to Jesus and see him multiply the gift.  This summer I witnessed a miracle.  Jesus took my poor dried up effort and allowed a church congregation to come alongside and we cut shoes for 400 Ugandan children, 800 feet.  This week I traced the last of the donated denim, but my attitude was jigger-infested and I still had to count the "leftover basketfuls".   In the feeding of the five thousand, the gathering in at the end is just as important as the dispersing at the beginning, because God is glorified in the count.  Therefore, as I laid the Sharpie marker down and added the tally, it seemed quite significant that from random jeans of all different sizes there were exactly 400 pairs of shoes.

What makes it even more notable was there were 40 volunteers last Saturday cutting shoes from a tiny congregation that rarely tops 100.   Many of the volunteers were elderly, with crooked hands, carpal tunnel and poor eyesight, yet they offered their waning hours in intense service.  It seems just like the miracles of old.  God still uses the weak to shame the strong.  The miracle is that Jesus uses the offering no matter how small and, in this case, returned 10 times the giving.

The miracle is that Jesus takes me with the jiggers burrowed in my heart which are damaging my compassion for a distant child with a distant physical infection and he stabs his Goodness into my spiritual infection to make me see the child as myself.  The miracle is that the work is never dependent on me, my righteousness or my effort, the work was accomplished on the cross when Jesus let himself be stabbed and speared in place of you and me.  The miracle is that he demonstrates his loving care for me by digging out the eggs of revolt in my heart.

If you know you are jigger-born, take heart Jesus does not turn his back on you.  He stoops to wash your feet and then he shods your washed feet in the gospel of peace.

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