Reading: Exodus 16
I was reminded recently of the summer of government surplus peanut butter. During my first summer on Mount Luther Staff, we had large quantities of peanut butter from the federal government. And our cook that summer found every possible way to use it. We, of course, had peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and we also had peanut butter Rice Crispy Treats, peanut butter pie, and other desserts that used peanut butter. The weirdest was peanut butter strawberry jello. I didn't have the nerve to try it but I heard it was awful!
Despite the fact that most of the staff got sick of peanut butter that summer, God provided for us. Just as the Israelites were provided with manna, we were provided with peanut butter. God will provide enough for all his children. We just have to accept what God gives us! -Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
Pray the Lord's prayer and pay particular attention to the phrase "Give us today our daily bread." Reflect on the meaning of that line of the prayer.
Reading: I Peter 2: 7
When you are feeling rejected by others, remember this verse. Jesus was rejected by humans but he became the cornerstone of a whole new world. Jesus took the burden of sin and died for us, showing God's love for us. We must remember that we are protected by God's love and have been given the greatest gift of all. Everyday is a day to remember that! --Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
Closing: Listen to the words in this song, which we've sung at Mount Luther. It sums up our verse for today!
Reading: Ephesians 4: 26-32
So often when we get angry, we want to react immediately. We want to yell, scream, and express our displeasure with loud words to the person we are angry with. We want to get it out and show our anger toward that person.
But God's Word says that we should be slow to speak and get angry. We should not have a knee jerk reaction to something that gets under our skin. And, if we do get angry, we should not hold a grudge. I heard a saying once that a wise person does not go to bed angry. I think that is very sound advice, especially taking into account what the Bible says.
So, next time you are angry remember what we are taught in this verse. Don't be quick to get angry, and don't hold onto your anger either! --Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
Closing: Write down how you want to deal with anger the next time you get angry. Place it somewhere you can see it and do what you suggest the next time you get angry!
Reading: Psalm 123
For my parent's generation, these are the questions people ask when recalling history: Do you remember where you were when John F. Kennedy was assassinated? Do you remember where you were when the first man walked on the moon? For the younger generation, they may ask, "Do you remember where you were when you heard about 9/11?" For my generation, the question is, "Do you remember where you were when the space shuttle Challenger blew up?"
I do. It was on this day in 1986. I was a teenager at home, sick with the flu. I was watching "The Price is Right" when they broke in with the news bulletin that the shuttle had exploded off the coast of Florida. Immediately I thought of the teacher that was on board. My heart ached for the families of the astronauts who perished that day.
In death, many find comfort from God. They look to the sky and know of the promise of eternal life. My only hope is that the families of those heroes found comfort in knowing that their loved ones went to a better place. They dreamed of reaching the heavens in a space shuttle. They entered the heavens that day, etching their names in history, never to be forgotten. --Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
Closing: Pray for those who are mourning this day.
Reading: Colossians 3: 12-17
We have a saying at camp, "Everyone's a Winner at Camp Mount Luther." When we play games, we like to end them in a tie to show that there are no losers. We try to make the outcomes of games and activities very positive.
In God's eyes, everyone is a winner, too. God's chosen children are all winners to God. But as God's children, we should act certain ways. In Colossians, there is a "code of conduct" for all of God's children, telling us how we should live our lives. They are important words that we should heed.
As it says in this scripture passage, loving each other is important. Love binds us together in perfect harmony. If we love one another and treat our fellow human beings as winners, the world will be a better place to live. --Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
Closing: Reread the scripture passage for today and write down a few reminders from that "code of conduct" as to how you should act as a child of God. You may wish to put your reminders on Post-It-Notes and place them in areas you'll see often.
Reading: Matthew 10: 5-14
Jesus' disciples were given important orders when they began their ministry. One of the things they were commissioned to do was to go out and heal the sick. I could have used them several years ago.
When I was in high school, on this very day, I was attending a district choir festival. For supper that night, we had meatloaf. It didn't taste too bad, at the time. But later that night, my roommate and I, as well as many other festival attendees, got sick from that meatloaf. I spent part of the night in the bathroom. It wasn't pretty.
When people are sick, we should remember them in our prayers. Just as Jesus' disciples healed in Biblical times, our Lord can heal today. Ask for God's healing touch for those who need it!
Closing: Pray for the sick and those who need God's healing.
Reading: Proverbs 15:18
When I was in college, I lived with a guy who often would let his dishes pile up in our sink. Often, the pile would get so large and so smelly that someone else in our apartment would do the dishes. I figured that everyone would do their share of work around our place and these dishes often got under my skin!
One day, another roommate and I decided that we would take those dirty dishes and put them under the sink so that we would not see them anymore. We had cleaned the whole apartment but refused to take care of those dishes. So, we put those dirty dishes in a box, under the sink.
When our roommate came home later that day, he seemed happy, especially when he realized there were no dishes in the sink. But then he went to make his supper that night and couldn't find his plates and pans. When he discovered them under the sink, in the box, he wasn't too happy.
We are told in Proverbs not to be too hot tempered. I guess what we did was wrong- we should have nicely confronted him with the problem and asked him to make sure his dishes were washed in a timely matter. Instead, we pulled off a stunt that incited an angry response, which did not help the situation.
Confrontation is not pleasant. But if we approach it in a loving manner, our attitude should help the situation and put the other party at ease as well. Perhaps if we would have done that in college, our days of dirty dishes would have diminished! --Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
Closing: Meditate on or discuss with others this quote: "Life is what we make it, always has been, always will be." (Grandma Moses)
When have you felt that the grass is always greener on the other side?
Reading: Philippians 4:8
My father was a story teller. At one time, I thought all his stories were original. At one time, I didn't realize that many of his stories had a moral. Although he died when I was young, I remember his stories and now I am able to appreciate them differently than I did when I was a child. Perhaps you know this story. It's not my father's original after all. There are many different variations. It's the one about The House with the Golden Windows.
Once upon a time, there lived a little boy. He was poor, although he had just enough to eat and he had parents who loved him very much. There was one thing this little boy wanted more than anything in the world. He wanted to see the house with the golden windows. Early each morning, while he was doing his outdoor chores, he would look up as the sun rose. Across the valley, on the side of the mountain facing him, he would admire the most beautiful house he had ever seen. What made this house so extraordinary was its lovely golden windows. One day, when he thought he could make it not one more day without seeing this house up close with his own eyes, the little boy set off on foot towards this house. He walked all day, stopping only to eat his bread and cheese, until he stood before the fine house, just as the sun was setting. However, to his dismay, the house was not so grand as he had imagined. In fact, it was no more beautiful than his own meager house. And it did not have golden windows. He sat on the grass before the house and began to weep. After a few moments, a little girl appeared before him. “Why are you crying?” she asked the boy. “Oh,” the boy sighed. “I have walked all day just to see this house with its golden windows. As it turns out, I have imagined those windows all this time. This house is no finer than my house, and it has no golden windows at all!” “But,” exclaimed the girl. “I live in this house, and know the house you are describing! I have always wanted to go there myself! Look!” With that, she pointed across the valley to the boy's own house. And sure enough, with the setting sun, his house was The House with the Golden Windows.
As I was retelling this story above, I looked up and the setting sun was shining in my eyes. I stepped out front and took this picture of my own house, which, for a few minutes at least, was "The House with the Golden Windows." --Christine Conz Moll, former Mount Luther camper
Closing: Mediate on or discuss with others the following quote: “Be thankful for what you have; you'll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don't have, you will never, ever have enough.” (Oprah Winfrey). Pray the following prayer: Dear Lord, Help us to always keep an open mind, to be willing to see things from different perspectives and from different points of view, and to appreciate the things we have. Amen.
Reading: Isaiah 41:10, 43:1
Isn't it comforting to know that we are never alone? God is with us always, standing by our side, helping us out in our lives. Isn't it also a comforting thought to know that we have been chosen and named a child of God? God has made us and loves us for who we are.
For a time in my life, I worried that I would find myself truly alone someday. But after I realized that God will always be there for me, I didn't worry about it again. I can never be alone because I am God's child!
We will never walk alone when we are chosen people of God. Let's not forget it! --Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
Closing: Pray the following: "Dear God. When I am lonely, remind me that you will never leave me but rather will always be by my side. Take away any loneliness I feel and help me feel your love. In Jesus' name I pray, Amen."
Reading: Luke 4: 1-13
I admit, I've played devil's advocate more than a few times in my life. More often than not, my role has been to ask questions that will make people think or consider a scenario they may not have thought about before. But one time when I was in high school, I was the devil's advocate because I took a position of tempting someone else.
The choral ensemble I was a part of in my teen days appeared each year on a Christmas television show featuring local high school choral groups. We would travel about an hour and a half to tape our segment at the station. On our return trip, we would stop at a restaurant along the way for lunch.
On this particular trip, one of my fellow choir members (who was a good friend of mine) couldn't eat. He was also a wrestler and had to make weight for the match that evening. I teased and tempted him the whole meal, showing him the food I could eat and letting him smell my good meal. Instead of being a supportive friend, helping him with his situation, I made it worse by being the devil's advocate.
Jesus showed us that we can resist the temptation of the devil. Each time the devil tempted our Lord, he resisted and showed the evil one that he did not need to bow down to the devil's tests. We too should show that same resolve when we are tempted in our lives.
My friend was two pounds overweight when we got back to the school. I felt bad that I treated him the way I did. The situation did turn out well-- he lost his two pounds before the match and ended up getting a forfeit anyway!
Closing: Say a prayer to God asking for help in avoiding and overcoming temptations.
Reading: Psalm 139: 7
Over the years, I’ve been able to do some research on prayer. I’ve studied different styles of prayer, how you “should” pray, and how prayer improves the spiritual well-being of each of us.
A short time ago, I read a devotional book that had a new interesting twist on prayer. The author writes," A few years back, I started beginning my prayers differently. I began saying to God, 'You go first.' Then I would quietly wait for thought to start crossing my mind. I assumed that God would bring to mind the most important things I needed to pray about. If they were positive thoughts, I would pray them back with joy. If they were negative thoughts, I would pray about them with courage and honesty."
Ever since I read this, I’ve been intrigued. I occasionally try it and he is right; usually, something comes to mind that I should pray about. I think it is good for us to remember that when we turn to God in prayer, it should not just be a laundry list of things we want. Rather, we should look to God in praise, thanksgiving, and in genuine conversation with our maker. Perhaps if we listened more than we talked, new and interesting things might start happening in our lives! --Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
Closing: Pray the following prayer. Christ Jesus, our Shepherd and Savior, give us water when we thirst, food when we hunger, and life when we face death. Thanks be to you for satisfying our needs. Amen.
(This prayer taken from the Moravian Daily Texts. To sign up to get daily e-mails with a Bible verse and prayer, go to the following web address: http://www.moravian.org/daily_texts/)
Reading: Matthew 6: 7-15
Do you remember how you learned the Lord's Prayer? I do. When I was young, my mom and dad taught my sister and me the Lord's Prayer each night after we ate supper. We would have to learn a line or two before we could have dessert. Then, the next night we would have to repeat from memory what we learned the night before.
Jesus taught us to pray by heralding our God's name, by praying that God's will be done, by asking for our needs, and by asking for forgiveness for our sins. He also taught up to forgive one another. What a great lesson Jesus taught in so few words! I was also told that when in doubt about what to pray, you should praise the Lord for sending us God's only son. What more would a father want hear than praise for his son? God sent us the greatest gift of all and we should thank God for it!
May people wonder what they should say in their prayers. Well, just look at the Lord's Prayer. It is spelled out in that simple prayer that many have learned as children, maybe even at the dinner table. --Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
Closing: Pray the Lord's Prayer.
Reading: Ephesians 5:2
One day I went into a local shoe store and bought a brand new pair of dress shoes. As I was leaving the store, I thought of a story my dad told me one time about shoes. I remember him saying that there was a time when he had a pair of shoes with a hole in the sole. He still wore them to work because he couldn't afford a new pair. He had other priorities which took precedence over getting a new pair of dress shoes. As he sat with the people he served in his work, he had to remember not to cross his legs and reveal his "holy shoes."
My dad made a sacrifice for my sister and me. Instead of getting new shoes for himself, he made sure that we were fed and taken care of. I'm sure it wasn't easy for him to walk in those shoes with the holes, but to him his family was more important than the well-being of his own footwear.
If you are like me, you appreciate more of what you have when you have less of it. If you only have one of your favorite cookies, you savor the taste. If you have a whole bag, you tend to eat them faster and not appreciate them as much. When I was first starting out on my own, I think I was more grateful for what I had then as opposed to now. Material goods are a lot easier to come by for me now and I don't think I appreciate them as much.
Appreciate what you have and remember, sacrifices can be good. And dad, the shoes I bought at that shoe store are "repairable," I'm told. I can the soles fixed some day if I need to! --Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
Closing: Mediate on or discuss with others the following quote: "Most people are about as happy as they make up their minds to be." (Abraham Lincoln)
Reading: Psalm 119: 105
"Truck Stories and Other Tales Which May or May Not Involve Vehicles." That's the title of a book that a friend of mine and I want to write. We often remark that we have so many stories that revolve around riding in cars, transporting canoes and other equipment, and other activities in or around vehicles.
When you think of it, we do spend a lot of time in our cars. You may have to commute to work, you may go on a cross-country vacation or you may just use your vehicle to run around town. Whatever the case, cars are relied upon to provide us transportation and get us to where we are going.
But what do we rely upon to get us where we are going in our spiritual lives? As the psalmist says, "Thy Word is a lamp unto our feet and a light unto our path." Men are frequently accused of not asking for directions when they are traveling. Often I have heard them accused of being stubborn. Hopefully all people are not stubborn when it comes to asking for direction in their life. Should not that direction come from the Word of God? It is the light which will lead our paths as we travel through our life on earth. And, unlike the gas station attendant's directions, the holy directions will not lead us wrong.
Don't be afraid to ask for directions-- especially if the directions come from the good book! --Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
Closing: Watch this video of the song, "Thy Word." Amy Grant also reminds us that we all need direction in our lives!
Reading: I Peter 4: 10
At Christmastime or your birthday, when someone gives you a gift, what do you do with it? Do you sit it on the shelf at home and watch it collect dust? Do you put it aside, paying no attention to what might be in the wrapped box? Or, do you open it, anticipating using whatever is given to you- glad to make the giver happy for what they have shown toward you?
Each one of us has gifts. No, not the kinds we receive at holidays and special occasions, but the gifts that God gave us. They are our talents and strengths and things that we are good at doing. As gift-possessors, we also need to be gift stewards. We need to take care of the gifts God has given us and use them to the glory of God and the good of our fellow humans.
How can you do this? If you are good a music, you could sing in the church choir. If you are good at teaching, you can use that gift to teach Sunday school or Bible studies. If you are good at athletics, you can us that gift to show others how to play games and help them develop their athletic skills. Perhaps your gift is cooking and you have been called to make food for those who need it or share your culinary knowledge and talent with others.
Our gifts should never collect dust. That was definitely not God’s intent when God blessed you with your gifts. Identify what you are good at and use those gifts. Share them with others! --Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
Closing: Write down some of the ways you use your gifts to help others, or ways you plan to do that in the near future. Put those pieces of paper in a small box and wrap it with gift wrap or newspaper. Place it in your home as a reminder to use your gifts. Open the box at some time in the future to see if you've done what you wrote down today.
Reading: Mark 4: 26-29
A seed needs to be planted. For something to produce fruit, a seed must first be planted in the soil. Then it must be nourished with water and sunlight. If it is properly nourished, it will grow and bear fruit.
Just like a seed, an idea must also be planted. Then, it too must be fed and nourished until it comes to fruition. After an idea is planted, planning needs to take place and work needs to be done before the idea is carried out.
When I was working at camp during college, I told the staff during our training that I could probably design an activity for the whole camp to participate in if they just gave me a single word. I was really only joking, trying to show them that in my mind nothing was impossible-- that we could do anything.
After our discussion, someone came up to me and said, "Dirt." I looked puzzled and he repeated, "Dirt. You should do an All-Camp Activity on dirt." I took it as a challenge. The seed was planted.
I nourished the seed by doing research on the four parables Jesus told about dirt. I based activities for the campers to do on those parables. If the campers adequately did their activity, they received a "prize." By doing all four activities correctly, they got a seed, dirt, a cup, and some water to plant a flower to take home with them. Just as I nourished an idea with planning, research, and work, the campers could nourish their flowers with water and sunlight to make the plant grow.
Nothing is impossible if you put your mind to it and nourish your ideas. It just takes hard work, persistence, and a little feeding. --Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
Closing: Use the following prayer or individually or as a litany with others:
Today is Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birthday. Just like Moses, Dr. King wanted his people to be free from the bonds of slavery. He felt his people were oppressed and deserved to be treated like others.
When I was in high school, I took calculus. During the first half of the year, we did derivatives. When we can to the second half of the year, we did integration. I remember our teacher saying that she always tried to start integration on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. She thought that was a worthy way to celebrate his accomplishments.
Dr. King tried to integrate his people into mainstream America. He wanted them to be accepted and treated as equals. Not only was that the dream of King, but I believe that this also was the dream of Jesus Christ. He wants us to accept each other and live in peace and harmony. It was His commandment-- love one another as He has loved us. If we live by that rule, no man will have to live in slavery again. --Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
Closing: Meditate on or discuss with others the following quote: "The blessings that we give to each other are expressions of the blessing that rests on us from all eternity." --Henri J.M. Nouwen
Reading: John 15: 12-17
When I look back on my life and all the friends I have made in my years on earth, there are a few friends who really stand out with whom I've gotten close. And when I look at those I consider my close friends, I see one common thread-- Christ. I believe that our friendship is rooted in Christian love, which makes our friendships strong. Not only do we have common beliefs, but we share the best friend of them all, Jesus Christ.
As Christian friends, we need to build each other up on the foundation of Christ. We need to help each other out, not tear each other apart. I wrote a poem once, which expresses this type of Christian love:
God has blessed me time and time again
With the gift of a loving and caring friend
One who challenges me and brings out my best
Especially when I'm being put to the test
One who stands by my side and is there when times are tough
Putting things into perspective and showing that it isn't that rough
One who makes me laugh when we share times together
And who when I need help would never say never
One to share the many details of my earthly life
Times of pleasure, times of peace, times of struggle and strife
One who looks out for me and shows me the right way
One with whom I'd spend time with any hour of the day
A friend is someone with whom I can be myself
Someone who doesn't matter if I have very little wealth
A friend is a person who is faithful and in whom I'd place my trust
Honesty is also a characteristic that in a friend is a must
Friends build you up and are teachers in their own right
I like friends who show or tell me they think I am special in their sight
Friends can also strengthen your faith in the Lord, I have seen
And help you in your walk with God, giving you someone on whom to lean
When others are persecuting you for your beliefs
They can you some much needed spiritual relief
Friends are a blessing from God and I am thankful for
All the people who I consider a friend but there is more
Because of all the friends I've had; one has done more for me
He is the one who died for my sins by being killed on a tree
It was the love of our Father, to us God did send
Jesus Christ, the ultimate gift of a loving friend
--Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
Closing: Meditate on, or discuss with others, this quote: "Rough and stormy are our ways, dark and dreary are our days; But another's love and praise makes them sweet." --J.A. Egerton
Reading: Psalm 8: 3-5
I have always been fascinated with space travel. When I was a child, the space shuttle program began; and I remember having a plastic model of the space shuttle and some space-themed LEGO bricks. I built space ships and sent them off into the great beyond to new worlds and imagined places.
When I was in middle school, I was home sick one day, suffering from the flu. My dad was making my sister and me (she was home sick, too), some soup as we watched “The Price is Right.” In the middle of the showcase showdown, a news anchor interrupted the program to tell us the space shuttle Challenger exploded. I stayed glued to my television the rest of the day, watching the coverage of this national tragedy.
In high school, my senior English paper was on the Challenger disaster. I researched the event, read magazine articles, books, and even the Rogers Commission Report on the accident. I concluded, as did others, that the disaster could have been averted. Years later, I watched news coverage again when the Columbia disintegrated on reentry back to earth. “How could it happen again?” I asked myself.
In 2011, as the space shuttle program wrapped up its thirty-year mission, I watched replays of the final landing with a bit of sadness. Despite the two major tragedies, this program exemplified America. It showed our resolve to explore outer space and, in a way, become closer with our God. To see God’s beautiful creation from space was a by-product of this program. To be reminded, as we watched space pictures from each mission that God cares for us, and created us in God’s likeness is something I’ll miss. --Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
Closing: Say a prayer, thanking God for all those who have explored the heavens and the earth.
Reading: 2 Timothy 4:7
In our scripture verse for today, we are reminded that finishing a race and keeping the faith is important. Here is a poem that also reminds us of that.
A lot can be said for winning,
It makes a team feel pride,
It makes them smile, and laugh, and joke
And proves how hard they tried.
My team lost the other day,
I know they could have won
They worked real hard, played real well
And did the best they've ever done.
Just because their record shows
That they aren't number one
Doesn't mean they don't go out
And have a lot of fun.
So maybe your team won the game,
But are they really the best?
Maybe this is just a way to see
If they can pass a test.
And if they can be real winners
And hold their heads high in defeat
And next time maybe the tables will be turned
When the same teams again meet.
--Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
Closing: Meditate on or discuss the following quote: "Go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons... Most important of all, be at peace with God. Remember, prayer always leads to peace. Be happy! With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world." (Author Unknown)
Reading: Acts 11: 19-26
The Lord works in mysterious ways. We can see God in many ways: the beauty of creation, the gift of friendship, God's unconditional love, and the trash toss.
The trash toss was a daily ritual when I worked at camp in college. The dumpster lid was open and our maintenance staff took the large bags of trash and tossed them into the garbage container. It became a basketball game of sorts. The trash was slam-dunked, shot from afar, and from shorter distances.
As the trash was tossed, a small group of people usually gathered to cheer on the star of the show. Rousing "yeahs" could be heard when the trash made it into the dumpster. Disappointing sighs accompanied a missed shot. Everyone rallied behind the trash thrower.
What always amazed me was that God was present, too. As the group gathered, there was a clear sense of Christian community. Many people gathered together for one common cause, surrounded by love. God does work in mysterious ways. Yes, we can see God in the beauty of creation, the gift of friendship and especially in the daily trash toss. --Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
Closing: Sing the song, "They'll Know We are Christians." If you don't know the song, search for it on the internet!
Reading: I Peter 5: 8
When I was a camp counselor, I was constantly counting the number of campers I had, making sure everyone was there that was supposed to be there. Being watchful of the kids in your care is an important part of the job of a counselor.
This verse from I Peter is also telling us to be watchful. It reminds us that, like a roaring lion, our adversary is looking for someone to devour. Or, as the camp song “Shut De Do’” reminds us, “Satan is an evil charmer looking for a soul to hurt; and without your holy armor, he will eat you for dessert!” We must constantly be on the lookout for the tempter who will lead us down a bad path.
How do we do that? In the first part of this verse, we are told to discipline ourselves. Discipline is a hard thing. We have to make a commitment, stick with it, and not stray from the narrow path. Through thick and thin, we need to set our eyes on God and shut the door on the devil, keeping him in the night! By allowing the light of Christ to dwell in us richly, we can be watchful and make sure we are always counting our blessings, instead of being regretful for doing down the wrong path. --Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
Closing: Watch this video of the song, "Shut De Do."
We have now added a feature to the Camp Mount Luther First Light Blog that you can get our daily devotions sent to your e-mail inbox. Just sign up on the right-hand side of the blog and they will be delivered to you when there is a new post!
Reading: Psalm 116
We were all very tired. We had spent most of the day hiking up a very steep mountain named "Jones." It was a day in early June and the wind was blowing as if there could be a storm at any moment.
There we all were, sleeping under the stars when many in my group heard a noise. It was none other than a porcupine in a nearby tree. Many shined their flashlights on this moving object. And suddenly they heard a voice shout out "Solo in A-flat minor."
Yes, you guessed it. A still-asleep member of our traveling group was talking in his sleep. Who knows what he was dreaming about, but it must have been something about music, which was no surprise to us, since he was a percussion major.
I was once told by someone that his wife accused him of talking in his sleep. He said that one night, just to prove her wrong, he stayed up all night and he said that not once did he talk in his sleep!
Sometimes we do things that are unaware of, like talking in our sleep. So does God. We may ask for something and think we never received it, but maybe we did-- just in some other form. Always keep your eyes open. Who knows what you might see!
As for my musical friend, he probably will never live down the fact that he talked in his sleep that night, But boy, would Leonard Bernstein be proud! --Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
Closing: Mediate on or discuss with one another where you have seen God today.
Reading: Genesis 8: 6-12
Many years ago, Darla Dove was flying across the land,
When suddenly an old man took her by the hand.
He had a beard, it was white, his hair was long and curly,
He came to see Darla in the morning very early.
"I'm going on a trip," he said, "will you come along?
God needs me to depart from here because humans have become wrong."
So Darla went with the man to a very large brown boat
She watched the animals go aboard, the once who could not float.
When all her friends were settled she went and sat next to a crane,
And suddenly the heavens opened up-- yes, it began to rain.
It rained for over a month, my friends, it rained both day and night,
The animals were getting very restless, some began to fight.
The boat floated across the earth, there was water everywhere,
Inside, the man's family had to learn how to share.
Darla Dove was getting bored, she had sung all the songs she knew,
When suddenly the sky cleared up and again it was bright blue.
The old man came to Darla and said, "I need you to fly away...
And come back with a twig branch on another day."
Darla, she was honored, so she left the boat with speed,
But she returned because she could not find a place on which to feed.
The old man said, "Don't worry," and sent her out again
And behold she flew a little while and indeed found land.
An olive leaf she took to the boat as the old man's gift,
The present from the dove that day gave the man quite a lift.
The old man released her out again but this time Darla found,
A place where she could live and make a home upon the ground.
She built a nest and furnished it and sat down to take a rest,
And when she looked up in the sky, she knew that she was blessed.
For in the sky was a rainbow-- a promise from the Lord above,
To everyone upon the earth-- even Darla Dove.
Darla laid down in her nest; a smile was on her face,
Because now she truly had witnessed some of God's great grace.
--Written by Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
Closing: Say a prayer to God in thanksgiving for the ways which God uses us to spread love.
Anyone is welcome to contribute! If you'd like to write for us, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Get our daily devotions delivered to your e-mail box each day by signing up below: