Doctrine: Christ’s Return, Day 6

Today’s reading is drawn from James 5:7-8 and John 14:3.

Hachi: A Dog’s Tale is a film based on a real story from Japan and a delightful parable about patiently waiting for the Lord’s return. When Parker Wilson, a college music professor in Rhode Island, steps off his commuter train at the end of the day, he finds a stray Akita puppy with the name Hachi etched on his collar. Parker discovers the puppy escaped a damaged crate after being shipped from Japan. Parker takes the dog home, determined to find the owner. While waiting for responses to the posters he has placed around town, Parker and the dog become friends. One day, Hachi follows Parker on his way to work, which begins with a walk to the train station. Despite Parker’s bidding, Hachi refuses to return home until his master walks him back to the house. At the end of the day, however, when Hachi hears the train whistle, he runs to the train platform, curls up and waits for his master to return. When Parker sees him, he is stunned by this demonstration of loyalty. The next day the dog is there to greet him again, and on it goes, day by day. One day Parker suffers a fatal heart attack in the classroom. Hachi waits for hours at the station for his master to step off the train, but he doesn’t return. This happens day after day for ten years, with the loyal dog waiting at the train platform each evening. And then one day, as Hachi drifts off to sleep, he sees his master beckoning him, and the dog runs toward him.

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He Moves, Day 11

Today’s reading is drawn from Acts 8.

News of Christ’s work is spreading rapidly—even miraculously—throughout the Roman Empire during the early days of the church. Case in point: God’s individual concern for the seeking Ethiopian.

Philip was obedient when he heard God’s voice, and as a result, it is possible that many in the country of Ethiopia heard the truth about Jesus. Patricia Tercels too was obedient to the still, small voice she heard, and the results were more than she could have imagined.

Patricia’s task was clear: Go to Stacey’s house and tell her about Jesus. She knew that the time was right and that her other friends had been praying for this moment. She wanted Stacey to experience Jesus, so she went.

When she arrived at the house, the driveway was full of cars. Patricia almost went home but felt God nudging her to go on inside. Obediently, if somewhat reluctantly, she knocked on the door. Stacey answered and explained that they were having a birthday party for a relative but assured Patricia that she was welcome.

The two women sat down on a couch in the living room, while the rest of the party continued in the kitchen. Patricia squirmed in her seat for a few moments, silently praying and trying to decide how to begin. Finally, Patricia simply opened her mouth and began telling her friend how to become a Christian.

As Patricia openly explained to her friend the story of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection, she did not notice the people gathering behind the couch, eavesdropping on the conversation. Before long, seven adults were gathered behind the pair as Patricia continued to share the life and love of Jesus.

When Patricia asked Stacey whether she understood and wanted to accept Jesus and become a Christian, she was surprised to hear that not only was Stacey ready but that the same was true of all seven people gathered behind her.

  • Do you think God still talks to people the way he did to Philip in Acts 8? Explain.
  • Have you ever felt God calling you to tell others about Jesus? How did you respond?

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