A recent conversation with a friend concerning my blog post about anonymously receiving a large bouquet of balloons reminded me of a joke I had once heard from a preacher. The friend asked if I really believed the gift of balloons was the result of divine intervention as I had expressed in the post.
“Yes,” I confidently replied, then told him the joke.
There was a Christian lady who lived next door to an atheist. Whenever the atheist overheard the lady pray, he would mutter to himself that there is no God, and sometimes he would argue with her.
One day she ran out of groceries, and the atheist overheard her praying. “I’ll fix her,” he thought to himself, and he went out and bought bags of groceries, set them on her front porch, rang the doorbell and hid to see what she would do.
When she opened the door and saw the groceries, she shouted, “God did it! God did it! God did it! Thank you, Jesus!”
He jumped out and shouted, “God didn’t do it! I did! I bought those groceries and put them on your porch! See? There is no God!”
The lady started laughing and dancing and praising the Lord.
“Didn’t you hear me?” the atheist asked. “I bought those groceries!”
“I heard you,” she said. “I knew the Lord was gonna provide, but I didn’t know He was gonna make you pay for ‘em!”
Something recently said by a different preacher made me think of another joke. Well, not so much a joke as a cute analogy. The preacher had quoted the first part of James 4:8, which says, “Draw nigh to God, and He will draw nigh to you.” Unfortunately, he made a logical fallacy by stating that the contraposition must then be true— that if we draw away from God, then He will draw away from us. So here’s the analogy:
A young man asked a girl out on a date. She accepted, and when he picked her up in his pickup truck, she sat as close to him as she could. They eventually got married, and they continued sitting close together. As the years went by, a space developed between them until one day, the wife lamented that they didn’t seem to be as close as they once were. The husband replied, “Well, honey, I ain’t the one who moved.”
The story reminds me of the parable of the prodigal son, who asked for his inheritance ahead of time, moved to the city, squandered it, and sought to return home as a servant and no longer as a son. All the time he was away, the father prayed and waited for his son’s return, and when he finally did, the father threw a huge party.
The father didn’t move.
It also reminds me of Romans 5:8, “But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”
If God draws away from us when we draw away from Him, He never would have pursued us nor sought to reveal Himself to us so that we could have a relationship with Him. Divine intervention? Yes!!
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