Hello, Reading Friends. This is David Telbat. “Give your Life” is a story about a father, so it serves as a Father’s Day Short Story, but anyone could be in this character’s similar mindset. It shares an important principle and challenge that God has been opening my own mind to recently.
We live in a world that measures success by what we have, but God measures service by what we give. The world talks about taking what we can and keeping what we’ve got, but God talks about giving our lives. When we pause and realize that this life is merely preparation for the next, it helps us prioritize. Let’s pray that you and I give from our hearts, and not just from our excess. Have you given your life? Then you’ve given your all!
Give your Life
A Father’s Day Short Story
by D.I. Telbat
Frank Nettle drifted through Spokane’s massive convention center, admiring the various booths emphasizing world missions. He did his best to drown out the droning of atheist protestors outside who were upset that Christians were hosting a mission’s conference inside the city limits. Sighing at the declining state of the world, Frank focused on finding his son’s booth. Seth represented COIL, an international aid organization about which Frank was hoping to learn a little more.
At the end of one aisle of packed spectators, Frank noticed a hanging banner that read, “How much will you give?” Scoffing, Frank turned the corner and reflected on the state of Christianity. It seemed it wasn’t much better than the world in the way everyone was always looking to take from others.
On the next aisle, Frank browsed a display that shared about bicycle evangelists in India. The bicyclists risked their lives to share Jesus Christ and transport Bibles by peddling hundreds of miles a week. But it wasn’t Seth’s booth, and it made Frank’s legs hurt just thinking about riding bikes that far. He continued, only to notice another banner like the first. It hung from the ceiling with the words, “What are you doing to build the church?”
Frank chuckled uneasily, wondering if the extremely zealous Christians would ever stop pointing a finger at the extremely comfortable Christians, like himself, to do more than they were already doing for God. He brushed his hand over his pocket, making sure he had his wallet and credit card firmly in place. If someone got real pushy, he guessed he could contribute five or ten dollars to a needy cause.
Turning onto the next aisle, beyond an exhibition of actors portraying Christian suffering in foreign captivity, Frank read another sign: “God wants you to give your life.”
Frank stared at the banner, recalling the first two, realizing now that they weren’t talking about money or a handout. The second banner must’ve been speaking of lives that mattered to God! And now this banner referred to his life that God wanted. This was real. And God was speaking to him. His Christianity was being called into question.
Moving to the side of the busy aisle, Frank clasped his chest. Never before had he been so convicted of his criticism of active Christians—and his own complacency to serve God with his life. His disregard for what God wanted, for what God had designed him for, was weighty. But it was only weighty, he realized in those few seconds, because he’d never taken God’s call seriously, to become a true follower of Jesus Christ.
“Dad, are you okay?” It was Seth, a tall youth growing his first mustache. He held a Bible in his hand. “Do you need some water or something?”
“No, I’m going to be okay.” Frank stood straighter and wiped his tearing eyes. “Just a little heart-check from the Lord. Why don’t you tell me how God called you to get involved in all this.”
“Why? You ready for action?”
“I think that’s what I need, something that costs me a bit more than what my credit card can do for the Lord . . .”
The end of Give Your Life, a Father’s Day Short Story
Read another Father’s Day short story called, “A Father’s Heart,” and another one, “Automatic Postcard.” Find other short stories by D.I. Telbat at Short Adventure Stories and Longer Stories here. You can also read this custom short story, “Shaped by Life” here.
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