But God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since, therefore, we have now been justified by His blood, much more shall we be saved by Him from the wrath of God. Romans 5:8-9
Years ago I told the story about a family that found a pretty rock in their creek and used it for years as a doorstop. Only after they sold it to a traveling salesman did they realize they had missed an opportunity to cash in on their giant gold nugget.
We've all had them, including Ronnie Music, Jr., of Waycross, Georgia.
Music's story begins way back in 2015 when he won a Georgia lottery game to the tune of $3 million. Now you know and I know that $3 million doesn't go as far as it used to. Even so, it's the kind of winning that makes the petty-cash box look healthy.
Well, Music had his three-mil, and he had to decide what to do with it. It was a tough decision. No doubt he probably thought about buying a new house, or cars, or a vacation retreat. Maybe he thought about investing in the stock market or providing wonderful gifts to special people in his life. Who knows, he might have even considered a luxury trip around the world.
Yes, there were a lot of good and smart options open to Music after he won that lottery.
I can tell you that Music didn't pursue any of them. No, he went a different path. He decided to use his fortune to start his own business: the selling of crystal meth, a highly illegal, albeit profitable, drug.
Eventually, Music was caught and put on trial where he confessed to drug trafficking and firearms charges. The law could give him the maximum sentence of life in prison for his crimes.
Yes, all of us have missed opportunities but, prayerfully, none of us have walked too long in Music's shoes.
Now I write that previous line knowing full well that there are many millions of folks in this world who are making choices far worse than those made by Ronnie Music, Jr.
Consider, 2,000 years ago, God's Son came into this world and gave Himself as the offering that would rebuild the bridge between heaven and earth, which had been torn down by sin. So we might be saved, Jesus dedicated His entire life to doing all that was necessary to rescuing us from the sins, which had condemned us to hell.
Jesus' life, death and resurrection are undeniable proof that His sacrifice has been accepted, and now anyone who is called by the Holy Spirit to God's freely given faith is forgiven and saved.
An opportunity to be saved is an opportunity which ought to be grasped and cherished. It ought to be, but all too often it is an opportunity which is ignored, disregarded and squandered. It is an opportunity which, when missed, has tragic consequences.
It is for these people we pray.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, all of us miss opportunities, but we pray that the lost of this world will be found. Send Your Holy Spirit and touch hardened hearts with the wonderful message that salvation is theirs, through the Savior's sacrifice. In His Name I pray it. Amen.
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries
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