By Eric Fjerestad
We all have heard stories that take our breath away of people who went above and beyond the call of duty, and exhibited heroism to save someone. They thought of others above their ownselves and put themselves in harm’s way to help others in need. After we hear about the deeds of their heroism, we are in awe and often call them and thank them for what they do. When we think of heroes, our minds also goes to police officers, firemen, our armed services, nurses, teachers, or anyone who has chosen a career of helping others. On September 10th when Sioux Falls was hit with three F2 tornados on one night, causing severe damage all over the city. The damage was done, and once daylight hit, I felt myself thinking, “Oh wow, this will take months to recover from.”
However, I was reminded that day of the great community we live in. As I drove around looking at the damage, I kept seeing people helping each other. Often times complete strangers who had never met dropped everything they were doing to come and help each other out. I came upon a verse in 1 Peter, “Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God's grace in its various forms.” And began thinking to myself we are seeing this in action at this very moment. That also got me thinking of how we always talk about as a youth group to always help those who are less fortunate than us or people who just need a helping hand.
I reached out to my student leadership team of high school and middle school students who help plan our weekly Wednesday night worship, and asked them if there was anything we could do. The response I got back was amazing, and they helped me plan and recruit students to get involved. One of our students cleaned up their yard after a huge tree fell just feet from their house and crashed down on their back shed. In a matter of hours, we had eight students show up and head over to the location where we were going to work. Over the course of the next hour and a half we proceeded to help chop, move, and clean up the backyard of a fellow Presbyouth student and their family.
Jesus shares many parables and stories about how we should serve others in need and love people not only when it is convenient for us but all day every day. On this day, our next generation became the hands and feet of Jesus and shared in his vision of what Jesus wants this world to be. A world that is there to serve others and not be served.