After many years of serving the Lord there was fruit evident on his tree–patience, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control were obvious. But there was another character quality yet to be demonstrated when the deacon made…
THE RIGHT BUT DIFFICULT CHOICE
It is Sunday morning … Main Street … USA. Bill has made a choice to attend a Sunday meeting. He has wild hair, wears a T-shirt with holes in it, ragged jeans, and no shoes. But this has been his wardrobe for his entire four years of college. Bill is brilliant–almost profound in his searching and gentle in his manner. One day Bill makes an encounter on the campus with some awesome kids who help him to a personal relationship with Jesus. Now he knows that he knows this One who has become the Lord of his life. The inward spiritual change in Bill’s life is gradually showing outwardly.
Across the street from the campus is a well-dressed, very conservative church. This congregation prays about developing a ministry to the students nearby, but they are not sure just how to go about it. So, this Sunday morning Bill decides to visit the church he has observed for months. Bill in his unkempt-wild-attire walks into the foyer and then seeks to find a seat. The service has already started, so Bill starts down the middle aisle looking for a spot. Every row is packed and he can’t find a seat.
Many people are becoming a bit uncomfortable, but no one says anything or makes any gesture to help Bill. As he walks down the aisle Bill gets closer and closer and closer to the pulpit; suddenly he realizes there are no seats available. So he just squats down right on the carpet in front of the pulpit.
By now, the people are really uptight, and the tension in the air is thick. About this time, the minister realizes that way at the back of the church, a deacon is slowly making his way down the aisle toward Bill. This deacon is in his eighties, has silver-gray hair, and a three-piece suit. Known to be a godly man, he is very elegant, very dignified, very courtly. The deacon walks with a cane and, as he starts down the aisle walking toward this boy, everyone is thinking that you can’t blame him for what he’s going to do. After all, how can you expect a man of his age and his background to understand some college kid on the floor in the front of this sanctuary.
It takes some time for the elderly deacon to reach the boy. The church is utterly silent except for the clicking of the man’s cane. All eyes are focused on him. The minister stands silently at the pulpit, pauses and waits, for surely he cannot preach his message until the deacon does what he has to do.
Then, they watch as this elderly man drops his cane to the floor. With great difficulty, he lowers himself … and sits down next to Bill so he won’t be alone. Everyone chokes with emotion as many reach for their handkerchiefs. When the minister gains control, he announces, “What I’m about to preach, you will not long remember. What you have just seen, you will never forget. Be very careful how you live. You may be the only Bible some people will ever read!”
Part 1 of 2
Chapter from, DeVern Fromke, LORD, Help Us to See Your Door of Opportunity! (Shoals, IN: Sure Foundation). Copyright DeVern Fronke, used with permission. http://www.fromkebooks.com/