So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.

Philippians 2:1-4

DEVOTION – APRIL 28, 2019

Recently, a group of eight men from Crossings Edmond and OKC–from different walks of life and ages, but who shared a common love for Jesus and a desire to serve—ventured to El Chilar, El Salvador for a mission trip in April.

This mission trip was unique because it was the first all-male trip, the first trip to El Salvador, and the first partnership with ENLACE. It was also the first trip where we were able to come alongside the local Casa de Presencia church and their community to help build a desperately needed health clinic. We worked!

God revealed so much to us in just a short time. We witnessed a church and community fully devoted to faithful servants of Christ. We felt the fruit of the spirit in every person we had the pleasure of meeting, working with, and spending time with.

The best was the unity, humility, and service we shared through faithfulness to serve God and one another. We came to El Salvador with an important consideration: to leave everything we knew at home. We committed to be faithful to God alone, to be unified in one body, to humble ourselves to this community and church, and to serve them above ourselves. And so did those in the community!

The most incredible experience for all of us was the realization that two different countries, two different languages, two different economic levels, and two completely different walks of life were able to come together to build the foundation for a health clinic as if we were meant to do it together all along.

What we found in each other was the unity of the body of Christ, the humility to count others more significant than ourselves, and to serve one another with the same love for Christ that he has shown us. It didn’t matter that we did not speak the same language because we shared in the same love for each other and for God.

Word spread through the community while we were working there, and soon there were people coming to the worksite just to witness the Americans and El Salvadorans together as one body to serve the community.

Our prayers are for the future generations of the community of El Chilar to receive the benefit from the healthcare facility. We also hope that no one will ever forget that God moved hearts of the faithful, building a foundation under the unified body of Christ.

I love Paul’s verses in Philippians 2:1-4, which remind us and encourage us to have Christ’s mindset toward each other: to share the same love since we are one in Christ the Spirit, and to act as one in him.

As we continue the 60th anniversary of our church and move into the next season committed to be a voice of hope, I pray you will find encouragement in the experience of eight men from Oklahoma and the community of El Chilar committed to live by faith and learn how God can use our faithfulness to demonstrate his grace and glory.

PRAYER

Father,
Thank you for this day! Let our hearts, minds, and spirits remain focused on Jesus, that we may hear your word with humble hearts, commit our minds to a life of your Word, and allow our spirit to unify with yours. Allow us to grow and know you more each day! Guide our church body, move our hearts, allow your light to shine through us in all that we do, Father, that we may be seen to all as one mind, one body, and one love that brings you praise and glorifies you alone!

Keep growing and going!

Gene Carlsward

Pastoral Candidate, Digital Marketing Manager
gcarlsward@crossings.church

GENE RECOMMENDS…

Looking for weekly encouragement? Sign up to receive each devotion via email or opt into notifications for the group “Devotions” in the Crossings App! You can also check out previous devotions at crossings.church/devotions.