Passing It On
“For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received. That Christ died for
our sins in accordance with the scriptures.” - 1 Corinthians 15:3
On the bulletin board in every railroad yard office, there was a hand drawn picture of Snoopy and Woodstock equipped with a railroad lantern, hat, walky-talky, and gloves. Below this was the caption:
“I’m passing on what I know.”, inferring that we are training the next generation. The truth be told, I found training to be hit and miss at best. There were plenty of stories about what the older employees did to the trainees, especially the trainees that no one liked. An old time employee once refused to train me by saying to me “I don’t take trainees.” but he still put my name and man number on his daily work ticket so he would be compensated for “training” me. Another classic stunt went as follows: “Stand at this switch, kid,” was the instructions one trainee received. After the trainee stood there for one hour, he went looking for his crew, as they were nowhere to be found. Where did they go? The crew went on lunch break. Most old timers felt that trainees slowed things down or asked too many questions and disrupted the flow of their routine. But I suspect the real reason was they were protecting their jobs. Years later, when I was a seasoned veteran, I had my share of trainees and I enjoyed the process of sharing my hard earned knowledge. Every so often, an old timer would come up to me and complain bitterly that the new guys don’t know anything. I always thought to myself: “That’s because you never taught them anything.”
The same can be said of the Christian faith. Are we passing on what we know? All of us are aware of how different things have been for the past month. We haven't met together, we haven’t worshipped together, many of us remain apart from work, and we can’t gather with friends or family. Yet this is also an opportunity. Looking at the number of “hits” or “views” on social media indicates that people are watching the service at Deer Creek in large numbers. Who are they? They are all sorts of people near and far away. Why is there so much interest in worship? People are looking for hope and answers. They are looking beyond their usual “go-tos” which have failed to provide answers. We at Deer Creek are small, yet we are preparing a new generation, many of whom have not even heard the truth of the gospel. We are passing on what we know! Who would have thought a few months ago that this would have to be? Yet God is clearly at work!
As we begin our Bible Study on Wednesday evening at 6 pm via Zoom, we will look at a question that was asked of one modern Christian writer, Max Lucado, about the faith. “What really matters? Tell me the part that matters.” In other words, what is the Christian faith about? This question did not come from some one new to the faith, but from a seminary student! The amazing thing about the gospel is that it doesn’t defer to the wealthy, educated or successful. It respects an open and willing heart that wants to learn. Spiritual depth is never about quantity but all about quality and depth. What promoted Lucado to write this book was that he didn’t have an answer! Would you know how to answer if someone asked you about Christianity?
Maybe God isn’t only calling new Christians; maybe he is calling all of us to answer the questions that really matter. Maybe we all need to dig deeper into the reason for our faith. Last week on the Road to Emmaus, Jesus went over point by point with Cleopas and his companion why Jesus came; why he had to die, and how the Resurrection changes a believer’s outlook on life. We have a message of hope and assurance that the world is looking for. Are you prepared to pass it on?
And pray for us too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim is clearly as I should” - Colossians 4:3,4
Yours in Christ,