Tuesday, January 26, 2010


I'm reading a fascinating book entitled "Lest Innocent Blood Be Shed," by Philip Hallie. It is the account of a Pastor and a church in Southern France that came to be known as "the safest place for a Jew in all of Europe."

This is from the back cover, "During the most terrible years of World War II, when inhumanity and political insanity held most of the world in their grip and the Nazi domination of Europe seemed irrevocable and unchallenged, a miraculous event took place in a small Protestant town in sourthern France called Le Chamblon. There, quietly, peacefully, and in full view of the Vichy government and a nearby division of Nazi SS, Le Chamblon's villagers and their clergy organized to save thousands of Jewish children and adults from certain death."

One account in the book speaks of God's provision of a helper for the Pastor's wife, Magda. Magda was in danger of dying of overwork in caring for all of the refugees. Her own children were in need of more support during those trying times. God provided by sending a helper from another village.

"Early in her stay she asked everyone to call her "Jispa." The name, which she invented by taking a few letters from the French phrase that means "the joy of serving in peace and love," was important to her. She had a very quick temper--her round brown eyes could flash suddenly to anger, and her anger took longer to subside than did Andre' Trocme's (the Pastor). She chose to be called Jispa so that every time someone addressed her, she would be reminded not to get inpatient or angry, but to serve that person in joy, peace, and love."

What a wonderful expression of God's calling to every believer. Galatians 5:13 exhorts us "through love serve one another." Fleshly tendencies work against the Spirit's calling in this regard. Selfish demands and sinful pursuits rob us of the joy that we would otherwise experience in Christ. We, believers in Christ, are all "Jispas." We are all new creatures in Christ who experience God's joy and peace only as we "through love serve one another."

JOY is imparted to your life by the Spirit when you put Jesus first, Others second, and Yourself last in your attitudes, words, and actions. We are all "Jispas" whether we are called by that name or not.

Pastor Jerry

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