Finally catching up with this writing, I wanted to provide another Oak Hill Hikers Devotion for you all to use should you like. Remember – Follow the Creative Commons Licensing rules if you do!
On Saturday September 16th, the Oak Hill Hikers traveled to Shelby, North Carolina to explore the First Broad River Trail, which is part of the Carolina Thread Trail system. An easy 3 mile round trip hike which ventures under old bridges, highway overpasses, and along the First Broad River, this hike is great for beginners. There is even a 120 Foot Suspension bridge!
Now, for the devotion: Changing Perspectives
Materials: Bible, strips of paper for a paper chain, tape or stapler, pens.
I began with the fact that I remember, all throughout my childhood, we drove over the Highway 74 bridge. At least twice a month, to visit a relative, head toward Forest City, or the Drive-In Movie (which is still there!). Then, last spring I hiked this trail with my sister and we passed under Highway 74. It was not a major thing, but it was still surreal to look at this highway from the bottom. It was a new perspective. In scripture, we get a lot of new perspectives.
When they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus gave two disciples a task. 2 He said to them, “Go into the village over there. As soon as you enter, you will find a donkey tied up and a colt with it. Untie them and bring them to me. 3 If anybody says anything to you, say that the Lord needs it.” He sent them off right away. 4 Now this happened to fulfill what the prophet said, 5 Say to Daughter Zion, “Look, your king is coming to you, humble and riding on a donkey, and on a colt the donkey’s offspring.”[a] 6 The disciples went and did just as Jesus had ordered them. 7 They brought the donkey and the colt and laid their clothes on them. Then he sat on them.
8 Now a large crowd spread their clothes on the road. Others cut palm branches off the trees and spread them on the road. 9 The crowds in front of him and behind him shouted, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessings on the one who comes in the name of the Lord![b] Hosanna in the highest!” 10 And when Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred up. “Who is this?” they asked. 11 The crowds answered, “It’s the prophet Jesus from Nazareth in Galilee.”
-Matthew 21:1-11, www.biblegateway.com
The people of Israel were expecting a King, a warrior, to be riding on a white horse with a parade of soldiers and celebrations of victory of the oppressor. The get a man, from Nazareth, riding on a Donkey and/or a colt depending on the Gospel.
This new perspective changed how we should view the Messiah. The scriptures are full these new perspectives, particularly around the Kingdom of God. When it is like a woman who folds leaven into a lot of bread, or a merchant who sells all he has to find the most precious thing, or the man who buys the field and all the land around it for the one treasure hidden in it. This is how we see the Kingdom of God.
(Hand out papers and pens): Now, I want you to take the time to think about when you received a new perspective through an experience or event which happened in your life. Write it on the paper. (Allow time and then allow time for sharing).
As each persons shares, we will create a link, and connect them together. Each time we are given a new perspective, we draw closer to God’s Kingdom and our role in it. As our chains grow, we can include other new perspectives, sharing them, and growing in God’s Kingdom. Both hiking and our lives will give us new perspectives, and as we respond to them we live into God’s Kingdom.
Close in prayer.