As an executive with many responsibilities to a multinational company here in my wonderful home town. It is my great honor, during this season of great peace and goodwill, to celebrate the MAGNIFICENT birth of our Lord the JESUS CHRIST. To this end the company I work for is distributing the large sum of 10000 USD RISK FREE money as a Christmas gift!!! All you have to do to receive the $$$ is be the first one to contact me at once via this email with the following details:
1. *Your Full Name*
2. *Your FULL and verified Bank Details*
This thing is for REAL!!! While I await to hear from you, may God be with you and your family and have a prosperous Yuletide.
Chief Financial Controller
Imagine you open up your phone, or sit down at your computer and this email is in your inbox. Also since we are imagining things, imagine it's Christmas time because that is when this story takes place. In 2009 this email was sent out to hundreds of clients and partners of Mother London, an advertising agency, to which they received one response. Even though the email was 100% true, they arrived at the office of Theo Delaney, and hand delivered him a briefcase with 10,000 dollars cash. Delaney was the only person to respond to that email.
We've all had our fair share of Nigerian Princes and fake phone calls trying to weasel their way into our bank accounts. Our guard has to be up constantly when it comes to our privacy. As technology becomes more and more accessible, the risk of our private information being compromised becomes higher as well. It's hard to give out your mother's maiden name for verification, much less your bank account information to an email that could be a potential hacker. I can't say that I too would have missed my opportunity for free cash by moving this email to my spam folder.
As we grow in God, He likes to stretch our faith as well. Knowing that God provides is easy to say, but a lot harder to put into practice. Then there are times when He says something that seems, to our feeble minds, ridiculous. In Matthew 17 Peter comes in contact with a mean ol' tax collector who tries to discredit Jesus by saying "I bet your Lord doesn't even pay taxes". To which Peter, who is willing to defend Jesus responds, "Yeah huh!" Ok maybe not in those words but, he wasn't going to let Jesus look bad.
As soon as Peter arrives back to Jesus, Jesus initiates a discussion about taxes. He then tells Peter in verse 27: “... go thou to the sea, and cast an hook, and take up the fish that first cometh up; and when thou hast opened his mouth, thou shalt find a piece of money: that take and give unto them for me and thee.” I can't imagine this was an easy task for Peter. It wasn't like: "Go out to the street and you'll find the coin there". Or, "Go over to the couch and you'll find exactly what you need in the cushions". No, he wanted Peter to fish and take the coin from the first fish he caught.
Sure, he had seen Jesus do some pretty miraculous things up until now. Just two verses earlier Jesus began the conversation about taxing even though He, Jesus, wasn't even there as Peter spoke with the tax collector. But this had to seem crazy to Peter. There was only one way to find out. Peter could have ignored it. Being a fisherman, he had caught many fish that didn't have coins in their mouths up until that point. Peter could have missed out, or he could allow His faith to be stretched just a little further and see Jesus use him for another miracle. Jesus told Peter to go. The circumstances were unusual, but the result was a blessing.
We may find it hard to obey Jesus when we don't understand, when He asks for the crazy. We may worry about what the response will be from those around us, and we may only see the impossibility as the "what ifs" pile against His request. There is only one way to find out when He asks you to make a giant leap of faith...jump. To reach higher heights, to experience deeper depths in our relationship with God requires some mobility. When we are willing to listen and obey the results will not leave us wondering, but will leave us fulfilled and satisfied with a perfect God who promised to never leave us or forsake us.
Stretch further, leap higher,
Sister Amber Klein