This past month I had the privilege to be part of the VOICE conference. As most of you know, sports activities at VOICE can be quite competitive at times. One afternoon at the Northwoods, I joined in a game of capture the flag. The game was going along rather well until I discovered I am not as fast or as coordinated as I previously imagined. This discovery was introduced to me through a full speed, literal head-on collision with a student. After crashing to the ground and rolling a few times, I eventually began to regain my senses enough to ensure I was in fact, still alive. As I lay on the ground watching the last few scenes of my life flash before my eyes, I prayed that the pain in my leg did not indicate a broken leg, and that my face was not bleeding too much. Thankfully, all that was required was a bandage and a few painkillers.
The next day or so, we had a church service in the tower. Going up that many stairs was a bit difficult as I tried to disguise the pain and act normal. As I sat in my chair, I was thinking about how much my body hurt, and frustrated at myself for not being able to avoid the collision. About that time, David L. began our worship service by reading Isa. 53:5 “But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.” When I heard that verse, the insignificance of my minor pains almost caused me to laugh at myself. At the same time, I had a tiny realization of the incredible physical and spiritual pain Jesus went through on the cross to pay the penalty required for my sins. The significance of Christ’s willing sacrifice out of love for me nearly brought me to tears. I had previously watched movies depicting the crucifixion of Jesus, read the Biblical account, and even heard testimony from medical professionals describing the intense physical pain Jesus went through on the cross, but at that moment the physical suffering of Jesus became real to me.
In living my life in a relationship with a real God, do my actions match my words? As imitators of Christ, we should be willing to love others the same way Jesus loved us. He was willing to suffer incomprehensible pain on my behalf, and yet I am often not willing to suffer embarrassment or rejection from others to stand for what I believe. This experience helped me to realize that nothing should hinder me from the responsibility I have of sharing the love of God with others that they too may know Jesus Christ personally.
Be bold to tell others what God has done in your life!