Take The Gift
by Lisa Petrarca
Crossing the busy intersection, there stood “Moses,” a local street preacher who received his name from the people in town. He can be seen on any given day at the Huntington Beach or Newport Beach Pier. He doesn’t shout out or yell at people as they pass by, he stands at the corner, while people wait for the light to change. He reads from the Bible, verse after verse, hoping that God will use him to touch someone’s life. He has chosen the life of a servant. He knows that people laugh, mimic, mock and call him a freak, but he just continues to read. He has sacrificed his own personal need to be accepted and focuses on others.
Directly across the street, a large group of people is circled around something. Pushing up through the shoulder-to-shoulder crowd I peak through to see what is so interesting to hold everyone so captivated. There is a man, about the same age as “Moses” but unlike “Moses,” he must be a VERY important person to have so many people stop and take time out of their busy day to listen to him. I finally squeeze my way close enough to stand on my tippy toes to get a glimpse of this obviously VERY IMPORTANT person. The moment my eyes focus on his face, I hear him shout, “Everyone ready…here goes!” In his hand he is holding the largest, thickest nail I have ever seen. In his other hand he is grasping a hammer. He places the nail up into his nose and begins to hammer it in. The crowd responds with loud gasps and some even cover their eyes…only to remove them to watch again. I rapidly turned around and pushed my way back out.
Glancing across the street I see Moses still standing stoically alone, holding God’s word and waiting for the crowd to come his way.
In today’s world, the one who can shock and horrify people is the one who draws the crowd. The preacher on the corner is ignored…“He’s crazy!”
This Easter, remember that Jesus also had huge nails hammered into his body, Not for entertainment, not to draw huge crowds, but to save each and everyone of us. His ultimate sacrifice should not be taken for granted. Don’t waste this precious gift he has freely given you. We all sin…we all can be forgiven. TAKE THE GIFT!
When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; he took it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross. Colossians 2:13-15