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No. 148
From Wendy Howard [Editor of Despatch magazine], Sunshine Coast, Qld, Australia.
Access Online

Getting to know God together.

We have a local store in our little town on the Sunshine Coast. We call it “The Fur Traders” because it seems old fashioned, like a store out in the wilderness that gives goods and food supplies in exchange for fur skins from trappers. The people there are kind and friendly. When the lady I work with was at The Fur Traders today she saw an odd sign, hand-written on a piece of cardboard. It was sitting on a pile of lollies (you might call them candy).
It said:
“Thieves! We know you stole our lollies.
We know who you boys are. Pay for them, or put them back!”

Well, that was pretty kind of those people in the store, don’t you think? They were willing to give the boy thieves another chance- the store people could have contacted the police instead. We wonder what will happen next. Will the boys give back the lollies? (They have probably eaten them anyway). Will the boys pay back the money they owe? I hope they don’t just laugh and keep away from that shop from now on. If they do make things right with the store owners, they would have “repented” about stealing those lollies. That means they would have turned around, turned away from doing that wrong thing, and they want to do good to make things right again. I hope they do that.

When my friend and I were talking about those lolly thieves, we started to think about ourselves when we were children. My friend told me how thrilling it had seemed to her as a child to cheat at cards. She once spilled a bit of black ink on the backs of a pack of playing cards, and there were lots of spots left when they dried. My friend got used to those spots, and she could tell what the cards were without seeing the fronts. She never told anyone she had memorised the spots, and she won lots of games. She was cheating of course, but it seemed exciting when she young, and she was not a Christian girl. It is funny that we think doing wrong is exciting when we don’t know God. But when we come to know Jesus as our Saviour, the things of God are exciting then, and bad deeds and thoughts are awful to us. It is because God has made us new creatures in Christ Jesus. We have new ways, thoughts and delights.

Back to the lolly thieves. When they “repent” (if they do) they will try to make things right by paying the proper money for the lollies they stole.  When we “repent” after being wrong with God we cannot make things right again by ourselves. We have too big a price to pay back. But God sent Jesus, His own Son, to pay the price we couldn’t pay. That is why Jesus died on the Cross, so that He could pay the price you and I couldn’t pay. What a wonderful Saviour we have, He has made things right for us. You need to trust Him with your whole life, because He is the Best One of all there ever was. The greatest of all!

‘ What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost [which is] in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?  For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.”
 (I Corinthians 6:19,10).

“Dear Heavenly Father, I am just a child, and many things are not clear to me yet. But I do know that You loved me enough to send Jesus to this earth to save me from all harm and danger. I want to belong to Him forever, and let Him be my Saviour and Lord. Amen. “

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