by Marlin Hoover
Luke 18:17 "I tell you in solemn truth that, whoever does not receive the Kingdom of God like a little child will certainly not enter it."
I was at a department store and was walking around in the toy, hardware, lawn and garden and all the other departments killing some time. I came to the sporting goods area and saw a cart just full of camping gear. I mean it was full. The cart was just sitting there full of all this stuff in the middle of the isle. As I scooted it over just a little bit to get by and was stepping around the basket I saw a little boy standing at the other end of the cart. He was standing there with the BIGGEST smile on his face. He looked up at me and excitedly said, "I'm going campin'." "Wow" I said. "It looks like you've got everything that you're going to need to go." He said "Yep, this is the tent, here is my flashlight and this is my sleeping bag. It's a Poke'mon bag. See it's got Poke'mon on it. I like Poke'mon." Just then the little boy's dad came around the corner and said, "Lets go" and started pushing the cart down the isle towords the check-out. The little boy looked back up at me, still grinnin' from ear to ear, and said as he walked off, "I'm going campin'."
I'm telling you that after him telling me he was going camping and seeing how happy and excited he was, I wanted to go camping too. I was smiling just thinking about it. I even started liking Poke'mon and I don't even know who he is. I thought about it and realized that if I had only seen the cart full of camping gear setting there I would have never had that desire to go camping. It was the little boy's sharing of his excitement that gave me the desire. It was his smile and joy that made me want to go camping.
Well…Here we are today, in our denominational department store, our church. We're in the exhorting department. We're filling our hearts with all the stuff we need to go camping. We have the tent of truth, the Bible. We've got our flashlight of faith, even though it may just be a pen light. We have the sleeping bag of salvation, it has Jesus written all over it and we just love Jesus. We're here in church with our hearts full of all this glorious camping stuff. Sad thing is all we do is walk around here in the store with it, we're just killing our time. Our tent is still in it's package. Our sleeping bag is still rolled up. We haven't put the battery in our flash light. We just keep it all stacked up in our hearts and never put it to use. We never go camping. This is NOT evangelism!
We're Christians! We're campers. We need to follow our Father to the check-out. Our Father has paid the bill in full with the sacrifice of His only Son, Jesus. We need to be grinnin' from ear to ear because "We're going campin'." We need to get out there with all the glorious things we have in our hearts and put them to use. We need to share the tent of truth and sleeping bag of salvation with all the people we find who are exposed to the elements of the world. We need to let our light shine before others that are in the dark about Jesus. We need to be like this little boy. We should be just busting at the seams to get out there and go campin'. To get out there and use what God has given us from the exhorting department. We need to listen to our Father. He's telling us: "Lets Go!" This is evangelism!
I'm going campin'! Let's all go campin'!