I was at the store shopping today when suddenly I heard this slight voice come over the intercom of the store. You could hardly hear it at all over the sounds of the store. People were clamouring to get all their last minute Christmas shopping done, banging and clanging, talking loud on their cell phones, crying kids, the beep beep beep of the riding carts backing up. Still something about that still small voice seemed to cut right through and I could barely make out the words, "free gift". " to get your free gift, go to...table... flashing light... 2 minutes" That is about all I could make out.
I found myself rushing through the crowd who seemed totally oblivious to the situation. The store was giving away something for free and nobody seemed interested. Nobody seemed to have heard. They were all too busy with their own little world. How had they not heard that there was a free gift to be given away? Or, maybe they did not even care? How can you not care about a free gift? GET OUT OF MY WAY! I thought to myself as people slowly meandered across my path. Don't you people realize that I am on my way to receive my free gift? Don't any of you want a free gift too? I could hear the person on the intercom counting down... 45 seconds... Where was that table at? 30 seconds... It has to be here. I know I am almost there! 15 seconds... THERE IT IS!
I scrambled down the aisle and made it to the spot where I could receive my free gift.A man came out to the table and looked around. He asked me if I was there for the free gift. YES I AM. But, nobody else was there. The man looked sad and began calling out to people around him, does anyone here want a free gift? I have a free gift to give away, won't anyone come over and receive it? One or two other people hesitantly came over to the table. The man at the table said, well, lets get started. Maybe more will come for the free gift once I start. We waited patiently as he began.
A few other people came over to see what was going on. What was this demonstration. One lady in particular seemed quite skeptical and seemed to want to interrupt with smart aleck remarks. A mother and her daughter kept getting sidetracked and joking with each other. Another one or two seemed genuinely interested in what the man was saying. Finally at the end of the demonstration he offered the free gift. The one caveat, you had to step up to the table to receive it.
People seemed a bit weirded out by actually having to step up to the table to receive their free gift, but eventually did. Even the doubter finally walked up and received hers. I think there was about 12 of us in all to receive the gift. I even went a step further and bought into it the whole 9 yards, as did a couple others and totally bought what he was selling. As I walked away with my new slicer and my free gift, I could not help but think how much that was like the offer of salvation . . .
That still small voice speaking through the air within ear shot of everyone who was willing to stop and listen, available to anyone who was willing to listen and follow a simple instruction, free and clear to anyone who showed up to hear the message, to receive the free gift. And even more, you had to make a personal investment if you were serious about the offer that was given and to get the full benefit of the message presented. It wasn't about just the free gift, but about the whole package.Romans 6:23 for the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.