This summer at SERVE 2018, the Theme for our youth group mission trips will be Love God, Love The World. Below are our Key Passage and Key Thought behind this curriculum.
>> Key Passage:
“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind,
to set the oppressed free,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”
>> Key Thought:
Jesus begins his ministry in Luke’s Gospel by going to the synagogue where he reads from the book of Isaiah. When he finishes, he calmly sits down, and tells those sitting there, “All of this is being fulfilled right in front of your very eyes.” For Luke, this passage from Isaiah is a snapshot of God’s mission to the world. In Jesus Christ, God has come to save us from our sin, to restore our relationship with him, but the good news is more than that.
The gospel is good news for those who suffer, it is good news for those living in poverty and racism, it is good news for people struggling with slavery and bondage in every form. In that synagogue, some 2,000 years ago, Jesus tells us that he has come to reveal God’s love for a world that desperately needs to be reminded of who we are and who we were created to be.
In Luke’s Gospel, Jesus tells many parables that imaginatively tell us what it looks like when God is in charge. These are stories that show us what God is like, how much God loves us and how much God cares about our lives in this world. They also show us that Jesus asks all of us to become his disciples so we can participate in this mission by showing others a small sign of God’s love.
In each of the parables, we will read this week, we see how loving God always leads to loving our neighbor. Within the parable of the good Samaritan, we’ll see how loving God means “coming near” to those in need. In the parable of the prodigal son, we’ll encounter God’s reckless love that runs out to meet his children. We’ll hear about what it means to “eat” with sinners and tax collectors and how it is in loving our neighbor that Jesus most often appears. After all, this is what this week is all about—participating in God’s mission to the world by loving our neighbor. This week, we invite you to follow Jesus by coming near to those who need to hear the good news of God’s love and grace. Our hope is that Jesus will appear to you in ways you never expected!
See all the sites available in 2018 HERE.
This year’s theme was written by Jason Lief. Jason is a Theology Professor at Northwestern College in Orange City, Iowa.