You could see them more than a block away. We were walking through the pedestrian center of Frankfurt, known as Zeil, and two young men were screaming at anyone within hearing. I am not sure of the exact translation – their Bibles in hand and sign gave way to the words. The volume, tone and anger of the two voices rocked in a bizarre cadence, indiscriminately throwing darts and arrows at the three of us walking by. Whatever the intent, the result hit like a hammer, pointing out mythical problems and solutions.
The sushi chef was in great form. Watching him from the other side of the restaurant provided a full picture of the scene. Three good patrons, waitresses trying to serve too many hungry and busy customers, a bottle of sake, and a few glasses of wine on top for good measure. I may not understand Japanese, but I understood the chef that night! The voice and words echoed across the floor. Bottoms up! Check please! Need some help here! Hurry Up! Here’s to you! Another Please! Thank-you! Come again!
The meeting was scheduled for two weeks. Invitations were sent to a large group and a conference room booked. Three people came. Whatever their frustrations about our service delivery, no matter what they will say in the days to come, their actions screamed out for all to hear.
There are many in life spending their time accusing others of this problem or that. Others complain but want no solution. Some like to tear down so they can build themselves up. Usually the arrows come from those close to us – for reasons that even they do not fully understand.
God is different. When the adversaries see the full picture there is no telling what can happen. However, there is one thing I know. “Who would dare even to point a finger? The One who died for us – who was raised to life for us! – is in the presence of God at this very moment sticking up for us.” (Romans 8.34) This is one statement needing no translation.