Come & See

Author - Arlie Francis

Stepping off the plane onto the tarmac in Accra, it was immediately evident that I was a sojourner in a strange land. Waiting to clear customs, I surveyed the passengers who had just flown with me from the United States. Mine was one of less than a dozen white faces. The accommodations throughout this trip were comfortable and clean, but some things required getting used to. While there was a hot water knob, no hot water came out. After three days of cold showers, I asked about it at the front desk. All I had to do was push a button to turn the hot water on! While there were many things in Ghana the same as in the USA, there were constant reminders that Africa is not my home.

I, Me, Mine
Before leaving San Antonio, I had looked at a map to locate Ghana in West Africa on the coast of the Atlantic Ocean. My wife checked the long-range weather forecast to see what clothes I should bring. Before leaving, I received precautionary vaccinations. I stocked my backpack with granola bars and beef jerky. Last, I ensured I had my passport before heading to the airport. Much planning went into my getting to Africa. A deep-seated desire to protect myself from the unknown drove many of my preparations. Lying in bed the night before I left, I can say that, for some reason, a bit of fear kept me from sleeping soundly.

Contrast my preparations with those of Jesus' first disciples.

Again, the next day, John was standing with two of his disciples, and he looked at Jesus as He walked and said, 'Behold, the Lamb of God!' The two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus. And Jesus turned and saw them following, and said to them, 'What do you seek?' They said to Him, 'Rabbi (which translated means Teacher), where are You staying?' He said to them, 'Come, and you will see.' So they came and saw where He was staying; and they stayed with Him that day, for it was about the tenth hour (John 1:35-39).

What was wrong with those two? They asked a simple question. Couldn't Israel's Messiah give them a straight answer? If it had been me, I wouldn't have taken one more step unless I heard something like, "I'm staying at the Jericho Holiday Resort. If you fellas are comfortable with that, you're welcome to join me." But no. What did the Son of God say? "Come and see." That's it. Nothing more. Nada, zilch! What did those two knuckleheads do? Andrew and the other disciple continued walking with Him until they "saw where He was staying; and they stayed with Him that day, for it was about the tenth hour."

A deep-seated desire to protect myself from the dangers of an unknown future drives many of my decisions. My fears have often robbed me of God's best for my life. Like His first disciples, Jesus invited me to become a disciple the day I met Him. He did not demand my obedience. Each day, He wants me to choose Him instead of me.

If you love Me, you will keep my commandments (John 14:15).

Well Done?
There is a certainty awaiting Christ's followers who accept His simple invitation to "Come and See." Over time, He will transform us in both our person and practice until we hear Him say, "Well done." Until I am willing to drop the safety net and jump willingly without reservation into the story He has written for my life, I will never please God. If I don't jump, I won't, in the end, even please myself.

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