Thursday, September 11, 2008

Seventy-five bucks

So I was there in the airport, lining up for my flight to Edinurgh for over an hour - and it turns out I was in the wrong line the whole time. As a result, I missed my check-in time and had to change flights to a later one. It cost me thirty-five pound, which is about $75AU.

After silently fuming for a while about the extortion that had just taken place, I came to a new conclusion after talking with God about it. If it was going to cost me seventy-five bucks to catch this different flight, then gosh-dangit He had better have had a good reason for it, and He'd better help the unfortunate soul who sat next to me, because I was going t evangelise to the poor codger!

The guy I ended up sitting next to was a cool guy, but the opportunity didn't really come up to talk God with him, apart from my desire to enter into ministry sometime soon. Either that or I just wimped out. I'm not entirely sure which it was. But on finally arriving at the bus-stop that was near my hostel, I saw a van with people milling around it. From this van, a bunch of Christians were giving out free soup and coffee to homeless guys.

As it turns out, the van runs every night of the year, no matter how cold or wet it gets (it IS in Scotland, after all). And around about 60 churches in Edinburgh help out, taking turns to participate in the outreach.

Now, had I caught my original flight and not the later one, I'd never have experienced this ecumenical marvel. It's hard enough in Australia to get two churches together to do something, let along sixty! It was a real encouragement to me to see Christians putting aside differences and getting out there doing Jesus' work.

But the experience got me thinking. That night, I was deliberately looking for something God-glorifying, because it had cost me $75. Surely if I had been forced to pay that money, then God would have a specific purpose for that expensive excursion was my reasoning, and I was out to find that purpose. I think seeing those guys in that van next to the beautifully lit castle made for a highly encouraging purpose.

Yet, if the excursion HADN'T have cost me $75, would I have been looking? Would I have seen God in that moment if it weren't for my perceived sacrifice?

Jesus sacrificed His life so that we could see God and His purposes. We were bought at a price, and that price was the death of God's own son for sinful man like me. That's a much higher price than $75.

So keeping in mind that ultimate sacrifice, shouldn't we ALWAYS be on the lookout for ways that God is working? It cost me $75 to see God at work in Ediburgh that night, but the only reason that was possible is because God already made the first move two thousand years ago. Without His payment, it would be impossible for me to come to know Him at all. If it weren't for Jesus, we wouldn't see anything of God.

It's my prayer that we all may be constantly looking out for Him in everything that we do, because He's in it. Keep in mind that a sacrifice has been made so that you can see Him.


Lauren Elizabeth said...

I love your optimism !

dante reznor said...

Once again Nick you've written something...something...Something. No matter how I fiddle with syntax I can't capture how brilliantly God has revealed himself to you, and its a real joy to see how you have noticed. Praise to God that he offers the greatest gift of all (eternal life) for free through the death of his son and seeing his ongoing work only costs 75 bucks at most.
I pray that you and we all would be constantly looking...