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Sunday, October 11, 2015

Don't Wait

In the last few years, when I hear that someone has died – anyone -- old, young, tragic or expected – I automatically think, “I wonder if they knew Jesus?” or “I HOPE they knew Jesus!”

That was the case yesterday when I heard that a colleague of Brian’s died in a plane crash. The man was piloting a plane for he and his daughter (a twin) – coming home from a Fall break vacation.  I had three thoughts that went through my mind so fast! 

The first took my breath away – thinking of the wife and other twin son that are left behind to figure out how to live life without their other halves.  In an instant, our lives can be upended. We think we have a routine or some idea of how today or tomorrow might go and then BAM!!!! A new normal. Nothing’s EVER the same. Pray for those terribly heartbroken souls! Pray hard.

My second thought was like I suggested: I wonder if they knew Jesus? Because, the reality is this: if they did, they are dancing in His presence as I write this. And I believe the Bible when it says – there is no more sorrow, no more pain, no more tears and they won’t even need the sun because Jesus will shine more brightly than we can imagine!  What a sight.

Here’s my third thought that threw me in a tailspin:  when am I going to move that eternity-changing question to the front of my conversations with people?

“Hi! My name is Kristin. Do you know my friend, Jesus? If you don’t, would you let me tell you about Him?”

Now, by this time, I’ve lost ¾ of you. I’m afraid some Christians (and probably me many times) have given Jesus a bad name. I lose my cool. I judge. I compare. I even swear sometimes. (Please don’t tell my mother.) I gossip. I jump to conclusions. I’m so selfish, it’s a wonder there’s room to breathe in my house sometimes.  But see, my friend Jesus, is NONE of those things!  I screw up a lot!!! But Jesus does not.

He loved me so much (even in my most dirtbag moments) that he gave everything SO THAT I could live with him forever. If you’re waiting for the God of the Bible to judge you, to punish you, to shake his finger at you – then you’ve gotten a skewed version of His story. And I’m so , so sorry if I was part of that bad retelling.

I’ve got to tell you. I have two sons whom I adore as much as a human could adore another thing. And I WOULD NEVER LET YOU HAVE THEM!!!  But, this Jesus…he willingly obeyed his Daddy to save me. To save them. To save you. SO THAT – we could live with Him forever. All of us. Forever.

I know there are a LOT of religions in the world. And I respect so much those who are trying to find their way. But how many of them have a God who gave their only son to take our many, many failings and redeem them into a beautiful life of sacrifice and service and LOVE – above all, love?

Christianity actually repulses some. And I really get it. I heard some stories from some Jesus-followers that make me want to turn another way. But I believe they had the wrong story teller. Jesus is a God of compassion and grace and forgiveness and love – above all, love. If you’ve never heard THAT part of the story…

Hi. My name is Kristin. Can I take a few minutes and tell you about my friend, Jesus?