Dr. Paul Chappell is the founding pastor of Lancaster Baptist Church in Lancaster, California. He tells the following story:
Last week we took our singles on a retreat up to beautiful Yosemite National Park. As we got back in for the evening service where I was to preach, one of our men said, “Pastor, I met a doctor who had brought a group of multiple-handicapped children to Yosemite. For many months they had studied about Yosemite. They began dreaming that somehow they might be able to go up the Bridal Veil Trail and see some of the park. So the doctor brought them.
As they came to this particular trail, it was very, very difficult for them. In fact, they were really just inching their way along. But they had this dream and wanted somehow to make their way up.
The doctor said as they were just inching their way up this trail, down from the mountaintop came a tremendous group of young men – tall men. As it turned out, the basketball team from UCLA had run up and down the trail, getting ready for their season. As those basketball players went by those young children with their multiple handicaps, the doctor said it was as if hope just fell out of their hearts and the actuality of their handicaps seemed to settle in, in a very significant way.
But the doctor said something wonderful happened about an hour later. That same team came running back up the trail, but this time each player picked up one of the handicapped children, put him on his back and ran him all the way up to the top of that mountain, then all the way back down to the bottom of the mountain.
Today it might just be in your power to give someone a much needed lift. Even if the lift isn’t a literal one (as in the story), it can be an emotional or spiritual one. If such an opportunity presents itself, don’t hesitate to embrace it. It could just be that somebody out there right now really needs you. Don’t let them face their mountain alone.
And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith. (Galatians 6:9-10)