Calling No. 73 - The Call to Deceive or the Call of Redemption?
I have a wonderful talent for imitating the telephone ring. It has a two-tone note, but I’ve got it off to a tee. And this comes in very handy, especially as I only make the noise when the phone is actually ringing. If my owner is out in the garden, he can’t hear the phone, but he can certainly hear me imitating it. So, thanks to me, he comes running in and is able to answer the call.
Sometimes he’s pleased to receive the call, and sometimes not. Because quite a lot of bad humans ring him pretending to be his bank, telling him that because of a security alert, he needs to transfer his money into their accounts. Or else they’ll pretend to be his internet provider, and say that there is a terrible virus eating up his computer, and that he has to pay them to stop this happening. He can get several of these calls every day.
Yesterday, I overheard him talking to one of these callers, asking them why they spent all their time doing harm to people instead of doing some good for the world. He said: “Take a close look at yourself. Aren’t you ashamed at what you see?”
And this made me think. Because whoever we are, -telephone fraudster or not, -there are still times in our lives when we need to take a close look at ourselves to see who and what we have become. It’s when we stop to do this that we can allow God to come inside. And this is what Titus tells the people of Crete in his New Testament book:
“At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. But when the kindness and love of God our Saviour appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of His mercy………………. Warn a divisive person once and then warn him a second time. After that, have nothing to do with him. You may be sure that such a man is warped and sinful; he is self-condemned” (Titus: 3:3-5a and 10-11)
I guess that we all have the potential to condemn ourselves. It’s rather like a parrot that gnaws through the perch on which it’s sitting until it suddenly falls to the ground in a crumpled heap of feathers! But every one of us has the chance to be saved as well, and to help make our world a better place! Every day of our lives is an opportunity to do some good. To lift, to help, to pray for, and to support others. So where shall I start today???