Last week, I and a dozen other ACFers spent the week serving at Windriver Ranch in Estes Park, Colorado. You’ll remember that Windriver has hit by two devastating mudslides as part of the worst flooding in Colorado history back in September.
We spent several days rebuilding the fence for their corral, cutting and clearing the thousands of trees that were lost in the slide, and doing overall cleanup and repair in the property.
On Thursday, our next to last day there, the Windriver staff made an unusual request of us. They asked if we’d be willing to join them in serving another dude ranch down in the Big Thompson Canyon. Sylvan Dale Ranch has been operating in the canyon since the late 1940s. The Big Thompson usually flows through it at about 30 yards wide and at 600 CFS. On the weekend of Sept 11-14, the river came through at 250 yards wide and at 16,000 CFS. Sylvan Dale was devastated.
The Christian families at Windriver feel terrible about what happened to Sylvan Dale and felt led to help them, even though they are competing for customers and even though Windriver still needs a ton of help.
So on Thursday we loaded up our gear, along with much of the Windriver staff, and headed down the canyon to Sylvan Dale. We were warmly greeting by the owners and by the foreman who had a long list of jobs that he hoped we could chip away at. Before we packed up and drove out several hours later, worn and weary, the complete list was done.
The highpoint of the day for me was when we prayed over the owners and the foreman along with the Windriver staff. I seriously doubt they had ever been the recipients of such radical love. We prayed for their favor, their success and the complete restoration of their ranch.
And we prayed it in Jesus’ name.
Would you do that? Would you take much needed help–gifts of time and laborers that had been given to you–and spend them on someone else? And specifically, on a competitor? That’s what Jesus’ love does.
How do I know that? Because I saw the Windriver folks do it for their friends at Sylvan Dale. And it’s one of the coolest things I’ve seen in a long time.
Want to know about camps at Windriver this summer? Click here.
We still have openings for the pastors and missionaries camps that I will be leading. Contact Molly at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.