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Nov 6

Sermon-pertenecer, el sacraficioSAMC
00:00 / 21:23

Pertenecer: una de las experiencias espirituales más profundos
...pero requiere disciplina y acción.
Hoy hablamos de la importancia de Sacrificar el ser viejo...
Sacrificar el esclavitud para vivir llenamente donde pertanecemos...

October 30

la paragrina_edited.jpg
story of the jungle and faithSAMC
00:00 / 08:25

Our leader this morning in church is speaking in Spanish. She has migrated here from a dangerous place south, and because of her particular case and experiences it is very important that she keeps her identity off of social media.  She is working through the nightmares and trauma of her journey north now in a safe community in our church, and on her journey of faith.

This morning she skips over the most intense stories of her journey and recalls some moments of grace in one of the most dangerous places in the world–the Darien Gap of Panama, an expanse of mountainous jungle that takes migrants many days to cross. 

She reads this morning from the ending of Hebrews chapter 11, and then the beginning of Hebrews chapter 12.

Hebrews 11:37 says:

They went about in sheepskins and goatskins, destitute, persecuted and mistreated— 

the world was not worthy of them. 

They wandered in deserts and mountains, living in caves and in holes in the ground.


Our leader this morning knows what it is to walk over the mountains with people escaping violence but also entering into great danger. 

She remembers one time when she was separated from the larger group making their way through the jungle trying to follow the signs and markings of a guide. She felt lost in the huge jungle and she didn’t know how to get to that night's campsite. Suddenly there were many possible paths and signs and she didn’t know which direction to take, or how to get to safety. 

Then out of the jungle came a man. He had also been lost and after a long time searching he had successfully found the safe campsite.  This man, after resting, had chosen to come back into the jungle to search for his cousin, who had fallen behind. Now he knew this section of the jungle well.

He pointed our leader in the right direction, and gave her good instructions toward safety. 


Our leader continues reading from Hebrews, this meditation on faith:

These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised, since God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect.


Now our leader remembers a time when she was walking with a larger group through the jungle. She was the only woman in the group of travelers. The way was very muddy and the path became very steep. 

She began falling behind the group.

Her shoes were slick with mud, and with each step she slid back further.

She felt trapped on the muddy trail and couldn’t make any progress.

The group left her behind, alone in the jungle, and they continued up the mountain.

She was alone for a long time.

Then another small group of travelers came up the trail and got her unstuck. She got moving again up the mountain.

Finally reaching a high point she found the group of men that she had been walking with earlier.

They were distraught and terrified.

They had just been attacked and held at gunpoint by bandits who had robbed them of everything.

They were glad that she had been left behind for that time.


She turns back to the passage from Hebrews, now the beginning of chapter 12.

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, 

let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. 

And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 

fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. 

For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 

Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.


Our leader says that we have to fix our eyes, especially when we feel lost.

She then remembers a time when again she was lost in the jungle. Left behind and weary, she had no idea how to get to the safety of the river camp where they could catch a boat to the next settlement.

In the jungle she found a dog, and over the day she bonded with the dog.

It was beautiful and she named the dog. She gave the dog some of her food.

Late in the day, the dog jumped up and ran from her, disappearing into the jungle. 

This made her sad and she called out to the dog. 

After a while the dog reappeared, but then immediately ran off.

She followed the beautiful dog into the jungle.

The dog led her, little by little, running and returning, through the jungle

And then she found herself at the river camp.

There in the large camp of refugees she lost track of the beautiful dog.

She believes that it was searching the jungle for lost people like her.


Turning back to this scripture passage, she asks, how can we receive the perseverance of Christ?

How can we receive the encouragement when the path is so challenging?

She encourages us to continue on together, supporting one another, and together receiving the grace of God.

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