You’d Better Get to Know Him or You’ll Self-Destruct!

Is 35:1-6a, 10 / Jas 5:7-10 / Mt 11:2-11

Scientists at NASA built a special gun to simulate dangerous, high- velocity collisions with airborne fowl. The gun launched dead chickens at aircraft windshields, providing data that helped reduce the accident rate. British observers were impressed and borrowed the gun to test the windshields on their new high-speed trains.

Their first test was a disaster: The chicken shattered the windshield, blasted through the control console, ripped the engineer's back rest in half, and embedded itself in the wall of the cabin like an arrow shot from a bow. The Brits were horrified and asked for help. NASA responded with a one-line memo: "You have to defrost the chicken."

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Life is a wonderful gift, but we surely do make a mess of it. We let our fears shut us down and freeze us in place. We let our desires for what we don't need or shouldn't have take us down roads we shouldn't travel. We harm our bodies, damage our spirits, and shorten our lives with too much or too little of too many things.

We use, control, envy, ridicule, and betray our friends. We wound hearts and trample spirits — and never notice it. We lie to ourselves, lose our way, leave half our gifts unclaimed, and spend our days in dead-end streets. And we do it all, again and again, in the sure and certain belief that happiness will be ours forthwith.

We need help! Without it we'll destroy this wonderful gift of life! That's why God sent Jesus: to walk with us and work with us as a mentor and friend, to show us what a fully human life looks like, and to give us the desire and the power to make such a life for ourselves.

But if that is to happen, if Jesus is to be a true mentor for us, we have to get to know Him, not just on the outside, but on the inside. We need to discover how He sees the world and all of us. We need to figure out why He was such a happy man, even on the bad days. And we need to find out what He was thinking when He chose not to run away when He knew that holding to course would lead to the Cross.

Getting to know Jesus, up close and personal, is the most urgent project of our entire lives. It will make the difference between destroying ourselves and finding happiness that will last forever. There's not a moment to lose: Get to know Him now. Let Him be your mentor. He'll save your life! That's what He came to do.

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