Worth the Risk?

Reading another book... Red Letters: Living a Faith That Bleedsby Tom Davis, the author of Fields of the Fatherless: Discover the Joy of Compassionate Living and the founder of Children's Hope Chest.

There is a story in the book that nearly ripped my heart out because it reminded myself so much of me! Tom Davis shares an experience on an icy evening in Russia where a 12-year old boy walked up and pleaded, in Russian, for something.

"Sorry, we don't understand," we said. It was no lie.
But we did understand the voices inside our heads that spoke with equal measure of cynicism and sad resignation. Just another worthless beggar. If we gave him money, he'd probably spend it on drugs or cigarettes. If the kid really wanted help, there are plenty of shelters that could feed him and offer a place to sleep."

He kept walking, tormented and challenged to act in a way consistent with calling himself a Christ-follower. So, turned around, found a translator and went after the boy. They found out the boy had a name and horrible story of hunger and homelessness.

The voices went off in his head again... "the same voice that speaks to me when I happen upon a panhandler back home in the States. He'll probably just buy vodka if we give him money. That inner voice - it is mine. And it very well could be speaking the truth. But it's not the voice I want to hear. I want to hear Jesus. Did he put conditions on the help he offered?... Jesus did not refuse to help the woman caught in adultery because she might sin again. He forgave her and told her to sin no more. She was worth the risk."

Ouch. That bothers me because I've spoken words like that to people and about people. But no more. My judgment stops and those voices in my head will have to be silenced to give way to the voice of the One who gave it all... regardless of the possibility (no, guarantee) that I would sin again.

Is he or she worth the risk? Is that person at the intersection with the sign worth the risk? Is that lady that speaks no English crying at the grocery store worth the risk? I wonder.


Holly (me.) said…
You've quite possibly hit on one of those key differences between me, you, us... people in general and Christ. Jesus knows the potential AND the guarantee of botching it, but He gave and gives still. How astounding that this is our potential as followers of Christ!

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