Trail Notes

Trail Notes: 4/17/2016

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Good Shepherd Sunday

The image of Jesus as our Good Shepherd is one of our favorites: a shepherd is earthy, humble, and focused on the welfare of the sheep. He goes after the one who is lost. He guards against dangers. If necessary, he lays down his life for the sheep. 

In our Monday staff meeting scripture reflection, we asked ourselves:

·       Who has been a Good Shepherd to me during my life?
·       How have I served as a Good Shepherd to others along the way?

We cited favorite teachers, influential pastors, and respected elders who have shepherded us in our lives, our relationships, our work, and our faith. We hoped we had been Good Shepherds to our children, youth, and to others whom we have guided and supported. 

When you think of the Good Shepherds in your life, you may think of people who believed in you and invested in you along the way. In my own life, there were teachers who spent extra time with me, relatives who helped fund music camp for me, and employers who took a chance on me when I needed to gain experience and expertise. I’ve been blessed by so many mentors along my way! 

When folks don’t have those Good Shepherds, life is really hard. In very poor countries, even a small investment can make a huge difference. The Anglican Church organization FIVE TALENTS makes that difference for tens of thousands of our neighbors in the East African countries of Kenya, Burundi, and South Sudan. Through business training and small loans (often under $100), FIVE TALENTS helps women become self-sufficient, and able to support their children in school. The impact of these modest investments is remarkable! 

You can be a Good Shepherd to a mother and her children in East Africa, through FIVE TALENTS. This Sunday, hear the stories of transformed lives at St. Dunstan’s at each service, and between services at 9:50 a.m. 

Consider whether God is asking you to be a Good Shepherd for some of God’s flock in Kenya, Burundi, or South Sudan. FIVE TALENTS is launching a new program of support called 1000 Friends, to expand this ministry tremendously. Your monthly commitment for three years could do wonders. Pray about what you can do, as a fortunate American family, for a struggling African family in need of a Good Shepherd.  JBM  

 

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