Summary: How does our Christian journey match up to St. Paul's? Comparisons between how we prepare for a automobile journey and lif'e's joureney. Jesus is superior to any recovery or rescue service on offer!
An Offer you Can’t Refuse? Acts 9 v1-25
I don’t know what criteria the vicar uses to allocate preaching slots, as I seem to get more evenings, I assume part of his strategy is to make sure I help swell the smaller number of attenders in the evening! However I am delighted to be able to start off this, the first in the series of evening talks on “Faith in Action”. It was exactly a year ago at the evening service I spoke about Paul my hero, that is of course St. Paul not the vicar! I used the same passage of scripture given to me for tonight’s talk. Although I was tempted to use my original notes to save time, as I doubt many remember what I said, I have decided to come in from a different angle, so to speak! This is the passage I always use when sharing my testimony at other churches as it relates very much to my own Damascus Road experience which made me accept an offer I had on numerous occasions refused! I have been sharing my testimony for over 28 years, I must have spoken at well over 600 different venues in the UK and abroad and virtually without exception, someone always says to me afterwards “Aren’t you lucky to have such an amazing testimony”. Although it is a privilege and a pleasure to travel around sharing it, my answer to them is “No! First I don’t as a Christian believe in luck and secondly I’m envious of those whose testimony is as simple as ‘somebody told me’ or ‘I read about it’ and accepted the gospel message. Wow! what a testimony of pure faith! I like Saul, needed a kick up the backside to come into the realisation of faith.
Although not all Christians will have a Damascus Road experience, all Christians are on journey, a spiritual road leading to God’s Kingdom. Figuratively, some may be cautiously negotiating along a country lane, even stuck behind a slow moving vehicle like a tractor. Others may be watching out for speed cameras as they zoom along in the fast lane, or should I say the over taking lane of a motorway. Traditionally most people who attend an evening service have already become Christian even if just starting their journey. Therefore this evening I want to concentrate more on getting the best from the offer rather than accepting the offer, as most here have already done so. I hope that makes sense!
However if there are any here who have yet to start that spiritual journey, I hope you may be encouraged to do so! At the lunchtime Carol Service I briefly spoke about the dangers of buying counterfeit good for people, for example watches and cheap perfume from someone selling out of a suitcase on a street corner and some of the consequences.I then closed by using the illustration of when you go into a reputable store to buy aftershave or perfume, you can experience the quality and fragrance before you buy, a free trial so to speak as they spray it on the back of your hand. Tonight I also encourage you why not give Jesus and the Christian faith a try, what have you to lose? Only your life! Jesus is the only thing that comes with a lifetime and beyond guarantee!