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home : religion : inspirational reflections February 23, 2019

2/9/2019 12:11:00 AM
How Low Can They Go?

Dr. Vince Hefner, Pastor
First Baptist Church, Cherryville, NC

1 Thessalonians 5:15 says, “Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always try to be kind to each other and to everyone else.”

To the best of my recollection, I have been in over 12 automobile/motorcycle accidents in my life. I have been hit from behind, hit in the front, landed side-ways while in a tractor and trailer, and have rear-ended cars because I wasn’t paying attention while driving. I am thankful to say that I have been able to walk or limp away from every one of them.

I don’t even want to think about all the “near misses” while driving. Once, I was hit by a bird while riding my motorcycle to work. He flew right into my chest and could not move because the wind held him (or her) against me. When I slowed down, the bird was able to fly away with a story to tell his friends! I did not call the police to file a report because I was going too fast and he (the bird) was flying too low, so I guess we were both at fault. 

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Back in the day when I rode a motorcycle, something happened to me that troubled me about as much as having a wreck. A friend was letting me ride his Harley while I was deciding whether or not to buy it. My wife was not in favor of the transaction, but I felt if the bike was parked in our garage long enough, she would begin to like it. She never did, no, she never even came close to saying she liked the idea of me riding a motorcycle.

One morning I walked outside to take the bike for a ride and my helmet was missing. Someone came into my garage and stole my helmet off the motorcycle a friend let me borrow. I had purchased the helmet a few weeks earlier. I didn’t own the motorcycle, yet, but I had been working my way up to buy it. First, I got a Harley shirt, then gloves, boots, hats, and finally my own helmet. The next step was a jacket, some more shirts, and then my own bike. I think everybody needs a goal in life!

When I first noticed the helmet was missing, I thought I might have placed it in the house. I searched the house from top to bottom, but no helmet. My helmet was gone! Then I thought my wife had taken it, as a bad joke. I never imagined that someone would steal a helmet off a motorcycle.

I want to go on record and state that I believe stealing another man’s helmet off his bike is as sorry as you can get! That type of person would steal candy from a baby or park in a Handicap Parking spot when they were not handicapped. I don’t care if you are a preacher, pope, president, adult or kid, nobody likes getting something stolen from them. I’m no exception. However, to have hard feelings over a thief is not the right attitude either. My mind came to this Scripture that I quoted at the start of this article. Obedience to God’s desires should always override the feelings of the flesh. This is not easy. I can’t tell you how many times I have had to reread this Scripture to convince myself that hard feelings or bitterness towards someone that I don’t know (I hope I don’t know them!) will never honor Jesus Christ.

I pray that the person who took it will never have to see if it protects them in a wreck. I pray that one day they will see for themselves that taking what does not belong to you is not right.

Forgiveness is just as much for you as it is for the person you forgive. It would be a terrible existence to never ask for forgiveness or never extend forgiveness to others. Forgiveness removes the sting of sin, and the stench of unforgiveness!

Remember, don’t give in to sin. Think about it!

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