Imagine a fireman who has saved many, many people standing before an assembled group of those whom he had rescued, the savior and the saved.
I can imagine the saved wanting to say thank you, in fact, I can’t imagine a more thankful group in my mind than a group of people delivered from the smoke and the flame. All of them saw death coming for them and knew they were alone. Each of them knew for a certainty that they could not save themselves. And each of them were eternally grateful that someone was there when they needed them the most.
The fireman is thankful as well, thankful for every single person standing in that room. Yet he can not rest in the accomplishment of rescuing those few before him, the job is simply not done just yet. The fireman must implore the saved to volunteer to go and risk everything in their new life to go and save others because for every person safe in that room, 10,000 outside of those doors stand at risk and need to be saved as well.
What I can’t imagine is the saved not wanting anyone else to be saved by the fireman. I can’t imagine them congregating and celebrating their saved status when so many are perishing just outside their door.
I can not imagine them deciding that the fireman would be pleased if they tried to gain the biggest and richest group of saved people together that they could- in honor of the fireman. Mega-groups of the saved, celebrating the fireman and the joys of their new life with the acrid stench of burning flesh floating in the air.
No, the fireman’s greatest joy would be in seeing others become like him. That his sacrifice would inspire others to do as he did. To seek and save them that are lost, to lay themselves down so that another might live when death seems inevitable. To show by their second chance at life that his choice was a correct one, that they were worth saving.
Were you one that was worth saving or would you be numbered with those others right now? Will you show the impact that his sacrifice has had on you- the beauty of a redeemed life or will you simply congregate with the others, safe and secure?
The world burns, from metro to farm, huge city to small mountain town. It burns and calls out for someone to leave hearth and home and save them from the fire. But there is no draft for this service, it is all volunteer.
We must go or send someone else in our stead. We must brave the fire or pray and support someone else’s efforts.
That is Christianity, everything else is a lie. And at this crux point in American Christian history, that is the only truth that matters.
Go ye, church, go ye.