Be the Billboard Someone Needs to See
On my drive to and from my home every day, I pass by a giant billboard on the side of the 101 here in northern California, close to my neighborhood exit. The billboard is for a local casino, advertising free gas if you play at their location. At this point, I don't even need to read the billboard as I drive by, I already know exactly what it's pointing to, and I already know exactly what it's offering. And I imagine the same is true for the countless other locals who drive by it every day!
In this way, the billboard is full of purpose and faithfulness to its mission... getting curious drivers to try out the casino if at least for free gas!
A similar image is left for us in Mark 5:1-20, which records the incident when Jesus restored and renewed the man that had been possessed by a legion of demons. After this man was healed, he wanted to go on with Jesus and his disciples, but, somewhat surprising to us, Jesus said no to his request. Instead, Jesus planted him as a living billboard within his hometown. "Go home to your own people," Jesus said to him, "and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you" (Mark 5:19).
This gives us something of great importance to consider: if you have been restored and renewed by God's grace through faith in Jesus, you are the living billboard God wants others to see, starting in your own hometown.
This week, consider that God may be encouraging you to light anew the billboard that is you. Reignite your appreciation and your "first love" for Christ (Revelation 2:2-4) by remembering how much he has done for you, then simply tell others how he's shown you love, grace, and compassion, which is far greater than a few gallons of free gas from a casino!