Summary: Seeking something deeper with Jesus.

Questioning Jesus? - Nicodemus

John 2:23-3:21

February 17, 2008

Second Sunday of Lent

4 Saturdays ago our family was on a family adventure to Krispy Kreme donuts in Burlington. On Saturdays we try to do something fun as a family.

As we were driving through Burlington, we were stopped at a railroad crossing as a train was going by. With 3 small kids with 2 parents who enjoy trains, we began to admire the engine and the cars. And we quickly realized that this train was not headed in one direction but instead was going back and forth like it was hooking up or unhooking cars.

When the train had backed up far enough the crossing gates lifted and we drove over the tracks and then took a back road to find a better spot to watch. All 5 of us got out and stood watching as sure enough the two men working were forming a train. Going back and forth. Back and forth.

Deb, Luke, Ben, Emma and I were eating it up. I grew up with model trains. Grandpa grew up with trains. Luke, Ben and Emma, on each of their first Christmas received an electric train. Our family likes trains. We were in our glory.

Then I had an idea, let’s go to Krispy Kreme and buy not just 5 donuts, but a whole dozen. Let’s get a whole box of donuts and bring them back to the spot where we’ve been watching and let’s just see if we can get in on some of this action.

Let’s just see if we can bribe our way onto the engine.

Let’s just see if we can move from being admirers to becoming participants.

Let’s just see if we can get off the sidelines and into the engine.

Let’s just see if we can get in on this very cool thing going on in front of us.

Let’s just see.

We went to Krispy Kreme, bought a dozen donuts and headed back to the spot.

We unloaded the car, each of us with a sense of anticipation and hopefulness, carrying the box of donuts. I got the attention of the brakeman. He told us when it was safe to cross the tracks. We crossed over with the box of donuts, opened it up and said, "would you like a donut?"

Sure he said.

He took one, each of us took one and we ate between bites talking to him about what was going on.

All the while the engineer was going back and forth hooking and unhooking cars.

When we had finished one and I could get the engineers attention, I held up the box in a offering type gesture, seeing if he would like one.

He radioed down to his co-worker - No - He didn’t want one.

At that moment I thought my plan was finished. And my mind began to create the scenario.

He didn’t want one because he was a grumpy.

He didn’t want one because I was distracting his co-worker.

He didn’t want one because it would slow him down.

He didn’t want one because . . . .

But then he radioed the guy beside us and said, "Do they want to come up into the engine?"

We heard the question, looked at each other and with grinning faces said, "Sure." And so Luke, Ben and I, not Emma and Deb because Emma was scared, climbed up into the engine and for the next 45 minutes helped Gary make a train. Gary let Luke and Ben sit in the seat and push and pull the levers. I was in my glory.

What was happening.

What we were getting in on.

What we had been invited into was beyond what I ever thought possible.

We were not just driving an electric train in our living room.

We were not just sitting in our car and watching a train through our windows.

We were not admiring the sidelines

Being simply spectators.

We were in the engine, in the engineers seat, driving the engine.

This was a dream come true.

As a child and even as an adult, I had and have similar dreams.

Is it not true that when you and I get interested in something.

A doll

An actor or actress.

A singer or entertainer

A sports team.

A career like a fireman or policeman.

Part of the scenario we play in our minds is-

If I could ever meet them.

Or see them live.

Or see where they lived.

Where the show was produced.

Even though Walmart has every Disneyland character for sale on its shelves, to get to go to Disneyland, to get to there is different. Even though you have every country record possible to get to

Go to Nashville or Branson, Missouri to hear the performers

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