Together for His Kingdom

Years ago, my husband and I worked with singles in our church. One of our social outings was a river canoe trip. One year my friend Melinda and I were paired in a canoe. It was a great day. The sun was shining. We proceeded without major incident until the very end of the trip. There had been a tremendous amount of rain that spring. The river ran high and fast. It was not a problem until the last bend right before we were to take the canoes out of the river. The force of the water made it difficult to navigate the canoe. Our canoe hit a bridge embankment and flipped. I got trapped between the canoe and a tree under the water line. The water was rushing so fast, I could not move.

I was a strong swimmer and felt very comfortable in the water, but I started to panic being trapped. I finally got my head above water enough to scream. I saw out of the corner of my eye a man sitting on the bank looking upstream. I yelled, “Help!” as loud as I could.

The man just sat on the bank. He did not try to help me or call for assistance. He would not even turn his head to look in my direction. He very calmly picked up the can sitting on the ground, took a drink and continued looking upstream. I felt like I was going to drown and he ignored me. Eventually others from our group saw the situation and came to help, but I will never forget what that felt like.

What does that have to do with us? I feel like that is a picture of the church today: Christians sitting on the bank enjoying the surroundings. We are content with God’s creation and God’s provision. We cannot be bothered by something as insignificant as people drowning in the river.

Two hundred sixty-nine million people in North America are sinking without the hope found in Christ. As Christians, we cannot sit idly on the bank. We must call for help, throw a lifeline, or wade out into the water. Can you imagine what it would be like to be in despair knowing you are going to die? You can see people all around you who might help, but they couldn’t care less if you drown.

We must respond. It is our responsibility to share the hope within to those around us. For others who are sinking to the deaths beyond our reach, we pray and give to the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering. United in Christ, let’s see what we can do together for His kingdom.


Give us courage to go where You have called us and do what You want us to do. Bless us with opportunities to build caring relationships and boldness to witness. Make our neighbors, co-workers, friends, family members, and acquaintances receptive to Your Word. Give them faith to believe. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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