Sunday, October 19, 2008

Making a difference

Great story today at the Rainier Hills Young Life Banquet. The speaker Ted Johnson told about a taxi cab trip he had recently taken from his daughters house in Wheaton, Il to O Hare Airport. When he got in the cab, he noticed that there was nothing in the front seat next to the driver but a well worn Bible. About halfway to the airport, his curiosity got the better of him...he just had to ask: "What's with the Bible."

The driver began telling him how important it was to him and it was a great conversation starter. The driver then asked Johnson what he did for a living. When Johnson told him he worked for an organization that helped High School kids. It was called Young Life.

The cabbie exclaimed, "That's remarkable. Young Life is the reason this Bible is here. When I was in high school, I was a tough kid but a Young Life leader at my school on the South Side asked if I would like to go to camp for a week at a place called Windy Gap. He told me that it was paid for - all I needed to do was show up and go. I did. And that week I met Jesus Christ and gave my life to him. Since then I have been telling others about him."

Believe it or not, Ted Johnson and his wife had made a big contribution toward the construction of that camp. In a sense, he was the one who had paid the way for that cabbie and others to go to camp and meet Jesus. He reminded us that this was an investment that made a real difference; an investment in a stock that just kept splitting and splitting and splitting.

How we spend our lives makes a difference. Who knows, the people in whom we invest our lives and faith may very likely turn out to pass that faith along to countless others. Whose life have I touched today? What kind of difference have I made in someone's life?

On a side note, the new area director for Young Life here on the Plateau is Mike Iverson and his most recent position was in Las Cruces, NM, running a program that Judy and I were privileged to be a part of as committee members and where our daughter Melissa was part of a group of college students that started their program as volunteers. Small world - or is it really?

1 comment:

Grandpa said...

Ah yes, Winter & Summer camps and youth programs. I grew up going to summer church camps, and was a counselor at two, and a life guard at one of the two as well (I think I spent three weeks at one; life guard, camper, and counselor all in one summer.
Still have photos of the wonderful girls friends I had at these camps. One even showed up for college where I was going one year.
Also spent a good many summers at the Interlochen music camp, and a couple of scout camps.
One summer, I was the bugler at church camp and then another year as bugler at a large scout camp.
I woke the whole dorm one night shouting in my sleep, "If you don't give me my mouthpiece, I won't play reveille in the morning." I never woke up and only heard about it the next morning after playing reveille.