Unification News for December 1999
It Could Happen To You...
Rev. Jim Stephens
You have gone through your normal bedtime routine and are lying there in the darkness. Suddenly you become aware of someone else's presence in the room. Strangely, you are not afraid but your adrenaline is pumping as if you were.
You are about to say, "Who's there?" when a voice speaks inside your head. It says, "Hello" and uses your name.
"Hi. It's me, Jesus."
Your whole being knows it's true but at the same time you think you must be just dreaming this. No one else is ever going to believe you. They'll wonder what you had for dinner and write it off as a chemical reaction in your brain.
Your thoughts are racing. "Oh my God, I'm so embarrassed for him to see me like this."
"I feel so much love from him and I'm totally unworthy to be receiving it. I hope he goes away soon."
"I've got to remember every detail of this experience."
"I can't believe this is happening."
"He's really real!"
"Wow! It feels like he's even more real than all the rest of the people and things in my life."
"I'm so happy, I hope this feeling lasts forever."
Then Jesus says with a certainty and an unmistakable clarity, "I have chosen you. From this day forward until the day you die, your life will be different."
"He's going to ask for my help. I can't believe it. Why me?"
"I'm a nobody. Why me? I can't do anything!"
Jesus waits patiently for a while for your mind to stop racing a little. And you know that that's what he's doing. Because he's waiting on you, you want to hurry up and calm down. But this makes you even more nervous.
Finally, after what seems like a long time you are able to take a few deep breaths. Throughout it all Jesus has been very reassuring. He's not in a hurry. He'll wait until you're ready. He understands what you're going through.
The amazing part of your experience is that his love is so wonderful that you want to reject it. You even think about sending him away because you think you don't deserve his love. In his presence your sinful nature and shortcomings are so obvious it's like a thousand watt bulb is shining on them.
And besides all that, which is bad enough, he has chosen you to do something. He needs your help. He's going to ask you to do something and you can bet it won't be easy.
The Lord isn't going to ask you for something small. He's going to ask you to give it all.
What do you think you're thinking now?
"I wonder if there's any way out of this?"
"How many chances do I get?"
"I'll never be able to do it."
"But how can I turn down Jesus?"
"This is the real Jesus. I feel great but this is really terrible."
Then Jesus speaks again distinctly. "I want you to be like me and go forth and save the world."
You think, "Oh, no! Did it have to be that one."
"I'm not qualified. I have no idea how to save the world. I have no idea where to even start. I haven't a clue what to do."
Jesus says, "Don't worry. I know what I'm doing. You are chosen. I trust you."
Jesus waits patiently like before for all this to sink in. Then gradually Jesus begins ascending and he gets smaller and smaller as he rises up into the sky and finally disappears like a helium balloon that slipped from a child's hand.
You're suddenly back in the pitch dark bedroom. Minutes pass as you go over and over in your mind what just happened, trying to remember every detail.
Now you're back to what everyone calls "reality". But what you've just experienced you now know is the "real" reality. Our everyday lives are just a shell of what real life is all about.
Now you have to go forth and save the world - whatever that means.
My friends, you are chosen to save the world and I am chosen to save the world. Whether you have this experience or not, and I hope you do, it's still the truth. Jesus is knocking for you to open the door of your heart.
Let's get together when you realize you are supposed to save the world. I need your help. I can't save the world by myself and goodness knows the world needs it.
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