November 20, 2014
READ: James 2:14-20
Faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. —James 2:17
The administrators of the high school in Barrow, Alaska, were tired of seeing students get into trouble and drop out at a rate of 50 percent. To keep students interested, they started a football team, which offered them a chance to develop personal skills, teamwork, and learn life lessons. The problem with football in Barrow, which is farther north than Iceland, is that it’s hard to plant a grass field. So they competed on a gravel and dirt field.
Four thousand miles away in Florida, a woman named Cathy Parker heard about the football team and their dangerous field. Feeling that God was prompting her to help, and impressed by the positive changes she saw in the students, she went to work. About a year later, they dedicated their new field, complete with a beautiful artificial-turf playing surface. She had raised thousands of dollars to help some kids she didn’t even know.
This is not about football—or money. It is about remembering “to do good and to share” (Heb. 13:16). The apostle James reminds us that we demonstrate our faith by our actions (2:18). The needs in our world are varied and overwhelming but when we love our neighbor as ourselves, as Jesus said (Mark 12:31), we reach people with God’s love.
— Dave Branon
us to find ways—monetarily and otherwise—to
help meet those needs. Help us to take the focus off
ourselves and place it on those who can use our assistance.
Open your heart to God to learn compassion and open your hand to give help.