Tonight, my friend, Ed Finlay who lives in Airdrie posted a photo of his neighbours house on Facebook. It had been damaged by hail from a large storm cell moving across the north of Calgary.About the same time friends in Bragg Creek, west of Calgary, had 3″ hailstones landing on their property.
As I looked north from our condo building in Okotoks, where the sky was mostly blue and the sun was shining I could see a very pretty cloud rising up into the sky with the golden light of the sun reflecting off its western face, it was really quite a pretty sight.
As I was checking Facebook YWAM Kona posted a warning of Hurricane Iselle that is bearing down on the Big Island this evening. It is closely followed by another big storm. The YWAM base at Kona, where we will be in September is battening the hatches, putting away all umbrellas and outdoor stuff, unplugging electronics and getting ready for the rain that may bring flash flooding and who knows what. Hurricane Iselle Warning
I am following both closely, Airdrie and Kona, as I have friends and interests in both places. I was struck tonight though, by how my position in both these events, sunny Okotoks, presents a very different perspective. While some are being hammered by hailstorm, I see the same storm as part of a beautiful sunset.
It occurs to me that storms are going on around us and as we go through life we see some as beautiful sunsets, because of our perspective. Kind of an “I’m okay attitude”. We may be working alongside someone who is going through a nasty divorce or live near a parent struggling with a rebellious teen, or share a bus ride with the wife of an alcoholic, or get served by a supermarket checkout person who just lost a mother.
As a Christian, an ambassador for Jesus Christ, how am I to respond to these folks in the storm? Those who aren’t able to treat me as I treat them, those who aren’t able to see the beauty in the sunset that I see.
Firstly I need to respond with love, 1 John 4 “8 Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.” and besides Jesus said that they will know we are his followers by our love.
Secondly, we need to respond with grace Ephesians 4 “32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.” We have no idea of the storm the another person is going through.
Thirdly, we need to respond with patience Galatians 5 “22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,” and the other fruits of the spirit.
There are other ways we can respond as Christians to those who are seeing with a different perspective but I think these three are a big start to being a true ambassador of Christ and Good News sharer.