Vonette Bright

On the south coast of China is the city of Macau.  Established hundreds of years ago by Portuguese colonists, it’s the gateway to China.


Many years ago, import-export businessman John Bowring visited the area.  He brought with him a supply of goods from England and Europe.


In those days, there were no electronic communications, so Mr. Bowring and his crew didn’t know a typhoon had devasted the island of Macau a few months earlier.  They were shocked to see it in utter ruins.  But there was one remaining structure:  a huge stone Anglican cathedral.  Its looming cross, glimmering in the sun, captured their attention.


Mr. Bowring was so moved by the sight of that cross that before he set foot on land, he wrote a hymn we often sing today.  Imagine what he saw as he penned these compelling words:  “In the cross of Christ I glory, Towering o’er the wrecks of time.”


When Mr. Bowring went ashore, he got a closer look at the church!  The heavy, hand-carved oak doors were still in place, and the cross was right where he’d seen it from the harbor.  But, when he went inside, he found it totally empty.  There was absolutely nothing!


Marauders had pillaged and burned the structure.  Now, all that remained was the stone façade, just as it stands to this very day!


My friends, I wonder how many of us are like that remarkable structure!


People know we call ourselves “Christians.”  But if they were able to look inside our lives, what would they see?  Would there be emptiness?


Like the façade of a movie set, things look real but they’re just “pretend.”  They’re fake.  They’re hollow!


Dear friend, Jesus had strong words for people like that.  But He wants you to be genuine in your faith.  Let Him change you on the inside and the outside will follow.


“The lamp of the Lord searches the spirit of a man; it searches out his inmost being.”  Proverbs 20:27


By Vonette Bright, My Heart in His Hands – Winter

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