This week we only have 1 service at 9am because this is our annual Walk 4KIDS event. The 3 mile course meanders through the Davie neighborhood around the Broward Church, ending in a potluck picnic. The Walk benefits the 4KIDS local charity that supports the initiative to find forever homes for foster children in the Tri-County area in South Florida. Ralph Ojeda was our visiting guest speaker today. Ralph and Eileen have been close friends since their time in Dade County. In spite of being parents of 2 children already, they decided to foster children and have had 8 children so far. Many of their friends in Palm Beach have also done so, with 33 children being fostered or adopted in the last few years. Ralph shared from Luke 10 about the parable of the Good Samaritan. Jesus was asked “what must I do to inherit eternal life?” and instead of just answering the question, he shares this story of man assaulted by robbers. With religious people passing by the half dead man, an unexpected savior comes forth and rescues the man and does all he can to help the healing, including paying for his care. Jesus’ long answer to the short question concludes with Jesus stating “go and do likewise”.
I was adopted by my stepfather. He wasn’t the best father, as I’ve shared some previous challenges, but it was clearly better than the alternative. I’ll always give credit and recognition when one does the uncomfortable/hard thing. It’s not the same, but last week I shared about being pretty homeless in California until the Ramos family “adopted” me and let me stay in their garage despite their financial struggles. I’ll always be grateful for their generosity. In turn, we’ve let others stay with us during difficult times.
Fostering and adopting children are not the only ways to do “likewise” as Jesus commands. There are many ways we can serve each other and our neighbors. We need to LOVE GOD and LOVE PEOPLE and that comes in many versions. Let’s find a way to do “likewise” this week !