“If it's true I live in a world where hope has all but died, and if I really have a living love alive in me,
How am I letting it be known? How am I letting it be seen?
These are the signs, these are the signs of life: the love that proves there is a living faith inside…
These are the signs, these are the signs of life: the compassion and concern that make this world turn…
These are the signs of life!”

-Steven Curtis Chapman

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Of Ducks, Minks, and Salvation

I went to Canada with a group of friends not long ago. The following is one of the journal entries I made during that time.

“Today is our last full day in Canada!
Even though it was wet and rainy, it was still great… This morning started like a bullet from a gun: when we were all on the porch this morning, we seven saw a mother duck and a few ducklings being irritated by a mink. Needless to say, we freaked out, concerned that we were about to witness a duck holocaust…

But then a boat came up. We started screaming asking the man to save the ducks. He did his best, but his boat was too large to maneuver properly. It was holding the mink off for a moment, but it wasn’t a solution to the problem. One of us seven goes running out the back door. No one pays much attention, too fixed on what was happening and too intent to keep yelling for the mink to go away.
The mother duck was clearly getting tired, and just when all seems to be lost - suddenly! – the one who went running out the porch comes flying around the island, a savior on a wave runner. She separates the mink from the ducks, keeping them apart until no harm can come to either the mother or babies. Needless to say, we six girls were cheering louder than was necessary at eight am on a rainy morning…

And it made me think of you, God. Of how the Law [in my case, the inefficient boat] only shows how bad off we are, how impossible it is to obtain salvation. And of how real salvation and freedom came in the most unlikely form of Jesus. The way Your obedience cut off the accuser from destroying me and instead let me escape the punishment for my sins. It made me see the Law is good and You gave it to us – but doesn’t save because we are sinners by nature. And of course, that You came to fulfill the Law and bring us life.

Just like in nature, the mink should have gotten a nice duck breakfast – and in justice, I should be damned. But out of love and grace, the entire order of nature was flipped upside-down. Salvation for the undeserving. Hope on a wave runner; salvation on a cross.

Lord, You are good, and You do good.”
Maybe you had to be there to get the whole picture, and maybe it was just a funny story I can laugh about later – but I can tell you that in that moment, I saw that Christ IS good, and He DOES good, even to the most undeserving like me.

By grace undeserved,