Sunday, July 24, 2011

Counting The Cost (Scott Hawley)

This evening's post was written by my brother, Scott, while I was in Honduras on another mission trip. It originally ran on July 11, 2007. Thanks for all of your prayers for me.

I am Steve’s younger brother, Scott, and I am filling in for him while he is on his mission trip. I was considering what to write about and the first thing that came to mind was the closing of a brand new theme park that just opened up one month ago in a little town next to Wichita where my family and I live. I am not sure why it has had such an effect on me. To me it is just such a shame. It is right by the highway where everyone can see it and it seems like such a scab on this little town. The name of the park is Wild West World. From the start it seemed to me like such an ill-conceived idea. They wanted to charge huge ticket prices to get into the park and yet it didn’t even have a major ride like a roller coaster. Someone on the news described it like an “over-priced carnival.” It looks very “junky” from the road. The name of the place didn’t seem to draw folks from around here. The fact that it was in a small town also seemed strange. Now it stands empty, next to the highway as a multimillion dollar monstrosity that many investors and season ticket holders will have to lose their money on.

The whole thing reminded me of Jesus’ teaching in Luke 14:28 on the cost of being a disciple, in which he says,
“Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Will he not first sit down and estimate the cost to see if he has enough money to complete it? For if he lays the foundation and is not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule him saying, this fellow began to build and was not able to finish."
Why did Jesus choose a tower as the structure? Why not a new bedroom or garage? A tower is a very public and imposing structure. Folks can see it from a great distance. It makes a statement. It is a solemn thing that we do, when we choose to pick up our cross and follow Jesus. People are watching to see if we will finish what we start. Are we for real? We all know of those who have started the journey and have given up. Like it or not, they bring ridicule on the church and the Lord. Jesus says in Luke 9:62
“No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.”
Lord, lift us up and steady our weak knees. Please give us the strength to finish what we have started and help us to live a life worthy of the calling that we have received from you!

God bless,
Luke 18:1
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