How Far Can Ye Go?
For many years I have judged my life with Jesus on how far and how many I reach in trying to obey the Lord to “Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature”. (Mark 16:15 KJV)
It had been my measuring stick, my pulse, my heartbeat for many years.
But as I got older and I felt like my feet embedded have become imbedded in cement that has long been dried and hardened, that in itself has been a hard pill to swallow for someone who for most of his christian life has literally gone into all the world…
So I questioned my self, can we actually go into all the world without actually going anywhere. The answer in this day and age would seemingly be yes with all the technology that can get a message, picture, word of mouth around the world faster than the speed of light it may seem.
I on the other hand have gone back in time and have been reminded of another way one can go into all the world without actually going himself.
It’s the story of my ex-wife. I met her, Ruth a Canadian by birth, when I was 23 and she was 19. We were both young christians and met at a christian community. She was single, pregnant and had just been accepted into a Medical college in Vancouver as she desired to become a doctor.
We got to know each other over the next few months and my curiosity could not be contained any longer as each time we met my eyes were drawn to long thin scars on her wrist. When I finally got to know her better and we were able to trust each other with our thoughts she told me her story.
She came from a little town near Niagara Falls, Canada. Her dad from what I can remember had died a few years ago and her mom still alive was a fire and brimstone catholic. Ruth on the other hand was a wild child and decided at a very young age, around 13 or 14 left home to live on the streets.
Over a period of time she got herself involved in drugs and went from foster home to foster home. On more than one occasion she tried to take her own life. She found herself being placed in government-run hostels one which had volunteers come in and help with the running of the centers.
Ruth told me there was one lady who would come in and help around the place who took an interest in her. They became friends and Ruth learned to trust her. Their bond became so strong that this lady, who I will call Marjorie, invited Ruth to come live with her and her family to help get her off the streets.
She took up the offer. Marjorie herself had three or four young children one being deaf.
Ruth told me with a wry smile that she tried everything in her book of annoyances to get herself kicked out. In hindsight she sees that she was testing the sincerity of Marjorie. She goes on to tell that Marjorie never wavered, never show any frustration and never judged this young wayward girl who was just too young to see and experience the seedy side of lifethat she was exposed to.
As time passed with her new family Ruth was seeing clearly that Marjorie was different. There was something about her that made her stand out above the crowd. She was starting to desire to become like Marjorie, to have that peace and love and patience that eluded Ruth throughout her young life.
One day she mustered up the courage to ask Marjorie what it was that made her the way she was. Marjorie answered Ruth direct and with compassion and a twinkle in her eyes said, “Its Jesus” was all she said.
According to Ruth that night she went to bed and asked God to make her like Marjorie.
Ruth went on to be a missionary, we had 5 children together including the one she was pregnant with when we met. To this day Ruth has continued to love God with all her heart at every turn and has literally gone in much of the world to preach the gospel in her own way.
I don’t know much more about Marjorie that what was related to me by Ruth and I don’t know if Marjorie physically went very far from her home town in her life time but this I do believe that Marjorie also went into all the world and preached the gospel to every creature through Ruth. Yes I believe that without leaving her home and by taking in a wayward out of control teenager Marjorie can chalk up the fact that she obeyed her Lord’s commandment to go into all the world….
Though my feet are stuck, this story convicts me that I too have been able to help those around me in a way that I hope will allow me to go into all the world through those I influence on a daily basis.
You get the point. If you are in a place that you can’t physically go right now, then find someone to go for you.
Or if you can go and there is nothing holding you back, what are you waiting for.
How far can ye go.