Then Jesus called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me and for the gospel will save it. – Mark 8:34-35
Seeking the trail is not easy in the overgrowth. My mother’s farm has ground along the banks of the Walla Walla River. In the winter, it’s not difficult to get through the trees and the brush. This spring, with all the terrible flooding, we explored the damage done by all the floodwaters and were amazed to see downed trees and a new channel for the river cut through the earth in surprising places. But this summer, it is almost impossible to get through the trees and the brush to find the river! I know there is water there. I can hear the river. But in many places, I cannot see the water or find a way through the brambles to reach the stream. For many children born into poverty, chaos, or gang violence, it is difficult to find the trail which will lead to safety and opportunity. This is the reason, 30 years ago, the Trailseeker ministry was started.
Young boys needed an intervention. They needed a different path to follow. The trail set before them was one of struggle, violence, and chaos. These boys needed voices of influence who could help give a different vision for their future. Through the work of countless volunteers, drivers, teachers, mentors, cooks, and support staff, the Trailseeker ministry has brought Christ’s love and new opportunities to children desperate for love and connection. Lives have been transformed by the love of Jesus Christ and we celebrate the work of God through your hands this Sunday, Aug 23, with a special worship service honoring 30 years of Trailseeker ministry.
I pray that you will join us online this week as we hear the stories of some of the men and women involved in the Trailseeker program. It will inspire your heart and encourage your faith.
God, you told your disciples that if we were to follow after you, we must deny ourselves, take up our cross and follow. Thank you for those who have faithfully done exactly that over the past 30 years through the Trailseeker ministry. Thank you for the countless hours of love, acceptance and support given to your children. Thank you for using us as your heart and hands in our community. Amen.