Thanksgiving Morning of 2016 I almost died…
Okay, so I didn’t almost die. I didn’t even get hurt. But I was a few seconds shy of being in a car wreck that could have cost me my life.
That morning, I had to run up to the restaurant, at which I was a manager, to give out the last catering dinner for a family who had ordered it but could not pick it up until that morning. Driving home, I was listening to music, just cruising and thinking about the day that was ahead of me. Breakfast was cooking at the house, lunch and dinner were planned at my family’s house and it was going to be a good day. As I got close to the house, I approached a green light. I was about to pass through the intersection when a car came speeding through his red light, bounced past the intersection, lost control and ended up flipping several times before coming to a stop in a drainage ditch, turned over on its side. As I slammed on my breaks and whipped into the nearest parking lot, my heart was pounding. Was this guy okay? Was there anyone else in the car? What was going on that caused him to speed, run a red light, and end up flipped on his side in a ditch?
I jumped out of my truck and ran over, I called 911 and waited. With the car on it’s side, there was nothing I could do. I waited until the EMT's and police showed up, told them what I saw and they said I could leave. And that was the end of it. I found out some time later that the guy did not survive the wreck.
Fast forward to a few months later… I was driving home once again and came to the same intersection. As a came closer, my heart began to pound. I slowed down to nearly a complete stop and then put on my turn signal. I could not find it in myself to go through that intersection, like I was planning on doing that November morning; I couldn’t not panic. That intersection had become difficult for me to drive through. If I ever came to that light and it was green, I would turn. If it was red, I would stop and wait and then go through. But for me to go through while it is green when I get there? Not possible.
So... Where am I going with this?
So often I hear of times when a person will encounter a Church or a Church-goer and have had a bad experience. They are hurt or someone says something hateful to them and they find themselves in the same position I am in with that intersection. They don’t want to approach it. If they are met with the opportunity to approach, they quickly turn away to avoid it. This must have been an issue even for the early church. Paul, in his writing to the church of Colossae, made mention of this. In chapter 4 of Colossians, Paul charges the church by saying in verse 5, “Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity”. Your words and your actions today can affect that way a person or a group of people view the church, Christians as a whole or Christ Himself.
So, I ask you, what have you done today to show love for the kingdom of Christ? Are you being wise in the way you act toward “outsiders?”