bits from bob....


by Robert J. Young
©, 2001, Robert J. Young
[permission is given to reprint with credit noted]

I dislike graffiti! Period. Even "good graffiti." Whether defacing new building or detracting from old landmarks, it is generally crude, ugly, selfish, and unnecessary. Do people really climb water towers, scale overpasses, and write on cliffs for love? The walls and doors of many public restrooms are horribly offensive to anyone with the mind of Christ.

My dislike for graffiti found me intrigued by the story of some New Hampshire graffiti which appeared on a railing by Lake Winnipesaukee. "I'm lonely Chris, I need you." Why would one write such an appeal so far from civilization? Who will see it? How will Chris ever know it is there?

The rest of the story. Upon closer examination, one can see that the comma is really all that remains of a nearly rubbed out cross that used to be as clear as the other letters in the message. The cry of a lonely person left a mark on that wooden railing. Consider the lessons.

No matter how remote that lake, the message can be read by the only one who can meet the needs of the anonymous writer. Jesus died on a lonely cross so humanity would not be lonely. The plight of the scribe who carved the message is the plight of many in our world, even among our friends and neighbors.

That message could have been written by someone who has no one else with whom to connect and relate, by someone who had just lost a mate, by someone in the midst of divorce, by someone who is searching for meaning, by someone who is old and forgotten by family, by someone who is isolated and alienated from society, by someone who has been rejected by the cliques of schoolmates, by someone facing death without any personal supports, by someone who is afraid of living and afraid of dying, by someone who is struggling to cope with life and is barely getting by.

How will such people know that Christ cares? Who shall be Christ's representative in the lives of such people? Most people will tell you that Christ no longer lives on this earth. I disagree. I believe he is living in me. I believe he is close to others when I am close to them. I want people to know that Jesus cares when they see me. What do you believe? What do others believe when they see your life? Will you be God's instrument to tell of his care this week? Pass the word! Put in a good word for Jesus! Invite someone to study with you or worship with you--this week!

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Last updated December 2, 2001.