I Met the Strangest Man
He said he believes in the Bible as the Word of God—but he never reads it.
He said the church would be more effective in its ministries if more of its members were really dedicated—but he never becomes involved in any ministry.
He said he feels the church assemblies are times for edification and praise to God—but he seldom attends.
He said he believes the younger generation needs stronger spiritual values—but doesn’t exemplify strong spirituality in his life before his children.
He said the church is not doing the work the Lord intends it to do—but he is not working.
He said he believes that God hears and answers prayers—but he seldom prays.
He said he knows the Lord is coming again—but lives as though the Lord will never come.
Great changes come to the world through small decisions by ordinary people. Be the change God wants to see in our world!
“Make a difference”
The legend of the Cherokee Indian youth’s rite of Passage
His father takes him into the forest, blindfolds him and leaves him alone. He is required to sit on a stump the whole night and not remove the blindfold until the rays of the morning sun shine through it. He cannot cry out for help. Once he survives the night, he is a MAN. He cannot tell the other boys of this experience, because each lad must come into manhood on his own. The boy is naturally terrified. He can hear all kinds of noises. Wild beasts must surely be all around him. Maybe even some human might do him harm. The wind blew the grass and earth, and shook his stump, but he sat stoically, never removing the blindfold. It would be the only way he could become a man!
Finally, after a horrific night the sun appeared and he removed his blindfold. It was then that he discovered his father sitting on the stump next to him. He had been at watch the entire night, protecting his son.
We, too, are never alone.
Even when we don’t know it, God is watching over us, Sitting on the stump beside us. When trouble comes, all we have to do is reach out to Him.
Moral of the story:
Just because you can’t see him does not mean He is not there.
“For we walk by faith, not by sight.”
“For we walk by faith, not by sight.”
Now don’t tell me how much you love Jesus if you won’t obey his commands. Don’t tell me how you adore him when you refuse submit to him. Don’t tell me about your doctrinal accuracy, your theological orthodoxy or how many debates you have had when your soul is withered. When you witch-hunt. When you listen intently to every word of another with a view to deciding if he is “one of us” Away with this “shibboleth” spirit.
It is difficult to recapture by an act of imagination the incongruity of a person self-designated as the Son of Man, hanging pierced and bleeding on a cross. The incongruity is less dramatic but even more offensive when this Son of Man has dinner with a prostitute, stops off for lunch with a tax collector, wastes time blessing children when there were Roman legions to be chased from the land, heals unimportant losers and ignores high-achieving Pharisees and influential Sadducees. Jesus juxtaposed the most glorious title available to him with the most menial of life-styles in the culture. He talked like a king and acted like a slave. He preached with high authority and lived like a vagabond.
- It’s strange how twenty dollars seems like such a large amount when you donate it to church, but such a small amount when you go shopping.
- It’s strange how 2 hours seem so long when you’re at church, and how short they seem when you’re watching a good movie.
- It’s strange that you can’t find words to say when you’re praying, but you have no trouble thinking what to talk about with a friend.
- It’s strange how difficult it is to read one chapter of the Bible, but how easy it is to read a popular novel.
- It’s strange how everyone wants front-row-tickets to concerts, but they want to sit in the last row at Church.
- It’s strange how we need to know about an event for Church 2-3 weeks before the day so we can include it in our agenda, but we can adjust it for other events in the last minute?
- It’s strange how difficult it is to learn a fact about God and share it with others, but it’s easy to repeat gossip.
- It’ strange how we believe everything that magazines and newspapers say, but we question the words in the Bible?
Revelation 8:1 Silence in heaven for half an hour: God listens. Everything we say, every groan, every murmur, every stammering attempt at prayer: all this is listened to. All heaven quiets down. The loud angel voices, the piercing trumpet messages, the thundering throne songs are stilled while God listens. “Hush, hush, whisper who dares? My child is saying his prayers.” Eugene Peterson