A Stone-Cold Fact

by Joni Eareckson Tada

“Do not be amazed at this, for a time is coming when all who are in their graves will hear his voice and come out—those who have done good will rise to live, and those who have done evil will rise to be condemned.”

John 5:28-29

My God!” exclaimed the boutique owner, a tall, blond woman with a German accent. “It would look absolutely great on you!” She held up the jacket on its hanger, twirling it so I could see the back.

“Oh, do you know him, too?” I asked, matching her energy with a big smile. “Who?” she asked, wrinkling her forehead.
“God. You mentioned him. The way you said his name, I thought you might know him.”
“Me? Nah!” she scoffed. “I did that whole God thing many years ago. I don’t need him. I have myself.”

That did it. As she took my charge card from my wallet and rang up the sale, I squeezed in as much testimony as I could. By the time I wheeled out the door with my purchase on my lap, Anushka still wasn’t convinced. But she did promise to read the Joni book, if I brought back a copy in German.

You meet people like Anushka in your community every day. Trouble is, we never look—I mean, look deeply—at a run-of-the-mill shopkeeper and picture this person rising out of his or her grave to either live or be condemned. Little wonder Jesus says, “Do not be amazed at this.” But we are. Maybe it’s because we can’t imagine Jesus as judge, as anything other than tender and compassionate. Perhaps we can’t fathom a voice so loud, so thunderous, that it will wake the dead.

It takes a passage like today’s to jar us out of our spiritual slumber concerning those around us who don’t know Christ. One day Jesus will come to judge the living and the dead. The dead we can’t do anything about. The living we can. Agree with God today that you want to fit into his plan to reach the women who work the day care center…the cleaning lady…the bank teller…and all those who don’t know the Savior. Like Anushka.

Embolden me, O God, to give the gospel to others today.

Taken from More Precious than Silver

By Joni Eareckson Tada

Copyright © 1998
Published in Print by Zondervan, Grand Rapids

All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible: New International Version.

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