Sunday, August 29, 2010

The Amazement of True Service

I had the pleasure of traveling down to the Miracle Lodge yesterday with a load of great people from Eagle Brook Church. Three others from my October Mission Trip to Louisiana were part of the group, which is how I landed the invite. I’d heard about the Lodge briefly before heading down, but had no idea of the amazing spectacle that awaited me. The place is well named, to say the least.

The Lodge, located in Ironwood Springs, is a Christian retreat sitting on 160 acres just south of Rochester, MN. It was built entirely by Christian volunteers from Churches, clubs and other Godly organizations. When I heard about it, I simply pictured Fry Lake, the place we’d hoped to work last summer. However, when we arrived at Miracle Lodge, I saw firsthand what true serving hearts can do when led by the Lord and guided by solid Christian leadership.

The lodge itself is massive and breathtakingly beautiful. To walk into it and realize that the building and everything in it was donated and assembled by Godly people, really brings with it a sense of peace and wonder you don’t get when you’re out in the secular world.

The owner, Bob Bardwell invited us into the dining hall in an adjacent building for a nourishing breakfast (which I passed on due to a stop under the Golden Arches on the way down) and gave a quick greeting before thanking us for coming to help.

The Eagle Brook team headed out to an old barn over by the stables, where Bob split us up into smaller groups. I was blessed enough to work with some wonderful men doing carpentry on an extension of the barn. We framed in one wall, sheathed in two, sided one and installed two windows.

Halfway through the day, Bob invited us back into the lodge for a nice lunch, prayer and fellowship before we headed back to work.

There’s definitely something powerful about working with your hands for God. It really brings a sense of accomplishment that far exceeds anything you gain from achieving worldly goals.

When the day was over, I was exhausted, my right arm hurt from swinging a hammer all day for the first time in 20 years and sweat and sawdust covered me from head to toe. While my body wanted nothing more than to shower, eat and sleep, my soul was singing.

If you haven’t done any service work lately, I’d like to encourage you to do so immediately. You might perform one small task that adds to a grand picture, like Mairacle Lodge, or Feed My Starving Children or Bridging or any number of other endeavors that have a Godly impact on a broken world.

Selfish motives never lead to self fulfillment.

Selfless accomplishments always lead to self enrichment.

Enrich your soul today.

Mark 10:45 - For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and give his life as a ransom for many.

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