A Real Honest Path Found Over a Game of Chess

(Today's post by Keith Senator)

Nahum 1

In my life as a boy, I looked around and observed many things. Raised in church, I saw people who called themselves Christians, at the church every time the doors opened, but lived a life undermining that seeming devotion with another life.

Personally I aspired to this life seeing it as normal. So I spoke the language and followed the role of good Christian boy, but in my personal life, I was completely unsatisfied. I found the life empty.

Later in life, I saw other people who lived a life that was in direct contradiction to the life I learned and somehow they seemed fine. They had money, they had the pretty girl, they had every appearance of success. Yet, as I looked more closely, I saw a faux there as well. It was not real. The happiness was an illusion.

Some years later, I met a Polish doctor in Montana. He was just a normal guy. Over a game of chess, we talked. We spent three months together and played chess every day in our free time. Through this time, I learned what a real Christian looked like. I saw a total surrender to the God I claimed to follow. I saw an unwavering devotion to His leadership and guidance. I saw a man, who in his own words was nothing, but in all actuality was made whole.

What was different? You see this Polish doctor saw God, he saw the path. He found the narrow gate.

I am reminded of my path when I read the story of Nineveh in the prophecy, the book of Nahum.

This book in my opinion shows the character of this God we serve as Christians. The God of all that we know. The God who was here before we began. The God who created all that is.

We see that all creation is dependent on God, we see that everything in existence knows who He is and His power.

Though we see here that Nineveh is in danger of complete destruction, we also see God as the Refuge in times of trouble for those who TRULY call Him Lord.

Though the language used seems distant from us in today’s world. It seems like we can only observe this old city and learn a few lessons of how it must have been to make bad choices as a people and deserve the destruction coming to them.

But how different are we, how different are we really? How different was I as a boy from this way of life? How different are you in your daily life? I think it is important to see this but perhaps for reasons other than one might think.

I think we tend to see God a violent God with a tendency toward destruction. If He doesn’t get His way, He tears stuff up. Though nobody can really deny this reality. I think we may misunderstand God.

Across from that chess board, I learned something about the character of God that was so different than I ever knew.

This entire world was created by Him, therefore all that is is dependent on Him. Everything has purpose, but when separated from Him, the purpose is lost.

Our highest purpose on this earth is to recognize our dependency on Him and devote our entire life to accomplishing the work he has for us, our calling.

When several wayward people move in the same direction, the group gathers more and more likeminded people until it reaches a point of no return, perhaps even the size of a town, a county, a state, a country, and then we see the judgement of God throughout history.

But His way is simple, it requires nothing but surrender. Where there is surrender, where there is allegiance, where there is respect, there is protection, grace, mercy, salvation, and it is a narrow gate and few will ever find it.

For those of us who have found it, we have a job to do, as many of you know, we do not need to give the world religion and create more barriers, we need to show them a changed life.

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