A Story About Contrast

If you spend much time around Christians it’s easy to become disappointed.

That disappointment is often a result of the justifiably higher expectations we place on Christians.

Sometimes a little perspective helps.

Three weeks ago, I was on the Re:create Cruise with a group of Christian writers and artists.  My wife and I spent most of our time with the Christians who were part of the conference, but toward the end of the cruise we went to one of the other restaurants on the ship and sat at a table with non-Christians.

We had been in Jamaica a few days earlier and the conversation turned to the Jamaican locals who hounded us from the time we got off the ship, trying to sell us their wares or take us to one of the local tourist sites for a fee.

One of the women at the table then told us about how one of the poor locals had offered  her a string of beads. She asked what they cost. He told her they were free but that she could give whatever she felt was appropriate.

She  then laughed and told us, “So, I took the beads and didn’t give him anything.  After all, he said they were free!”  She thought she was clever and her story funny.  The others at the table laughed.

I remember sitting there thinking about the contrast between this lady and her friends and the Christians with whom I had spent the previous 4 days. They had told stories about helping and serving people, how they fell in love with their spouses, and their desire to write books that would positively influence the world.

I recognize we were all that lady before we met Jesus, and even after that there are times when we may look like her, but in talking about how we are all sinners or in despairing the failure of Christians from time-to-time we should never forget that there should be a difference.

On the cruise I was reminded of that difference and it made me proud to be a Christian and to serve a Saviour who is about making His followers better humans.  GS

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