God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son. I know the words well, but I need to hear them often. Sometimes this is all we have to hold on to in difficult times.
I am writing from Greece, where I have been meeting displaced people, refugees with no country and no place to call home. Their villages and cities in Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan have been destroyed. They have lost relatives and friends. Entire families in limbo—pregnant women, young children, worried fathers, waiting in camps for months or years and relying on Christians for food, shelter, and clothing. They have nothing.
Sunday night I preached the gospel in English translated into Greek, Arabic, Farsi, Punjab, and other languages. I told the people God loved them. I told them that the reason we are serving them is because God has poured out his love to us and changes us from the inside out. And then I went back to my room and wept. (I'm crying as I write this.)
As I stood shoulder to shoulder with our global partner George Romeos, who was translating the message into Greek, I was thankful for a church that loves enough to give. Your generosity ensures that we can get the good news of God's love out to the world. I know I say it a lot, but I can't stress enough how important your faithful giving really is. Together our church and partners like the Romeoses are changing lives in Valparaiso and the world.
Let us remember to pray for those who are grieving the loss of loved ones in Las Vegas. And let us remember to pray for orphans and refugees. And let's pray for each other while we remind each other that God loves the world and he loves us.
From Greece with love, Lionel Young SENIOR PASTOR