Cody finished his talk with “Living by Heavenly Wisdom is actually a worldview shift, changing from our natural worldview that comes from our culture and environment, to God’s worldview, which we find only in Scripture.”
They were all quiet for a while, digesting this new perspective. Then Amy spoke up, “You are a remarkable person.
I’ve never met a man like you!”
“I am simply a follower of Jesus who takes God’s Word seriously” replied Cody. “Anyone could do this if they would try to live according to Heavenly Wisdom.
“That may be so,” replied Amy, “but you are the only person I’ve met who does that!” and she smiled at him, a radiant, enlightening smile.
Cody blushed and looked down. “Remember, it is God who brings the changes you see in me. He is the Redeemer and Transformer of His children. The credit and glory go to Him.”
“Now” said Cody, recovering his poise, “You remember the cowhand, Andy, who didn’t like me, Well, there’s more to the story, which also involves the last quality of Heavenly Wisdom, being sincere.
“When we got to Abilene, we were disappointed to see how small a place it was. Just a few log buildings, the railroad station and some holding corrals. But, small as the town was, the cattle buyers were there and that is what counted.
“We stayed with the herd while our boss went to make a deal. When he came back, he brought a number of the buyer’s hired hands to take care of the cattle until the train came.
“We were then free to go into the small town to see what was there. We headed first for the meal place, a plain log structure with only a couple of windows. It was no restaurant like you see out East, just some rough tables with crude benches along each side, all sitting on a dirt floor. A bald man with broad shoulders and a big belly welcomed us.
“Have a seat and I’ll bring you each a meal. Coffee’s on the stove, help yourselves.”
“We got coffee and sat down while he brought out plates of beef and vegetables. It was sure good to sit up at a table to eat after the weeks of sitting on the ground for every meals. We were all in a good mood.”
“Then the door opened, and three men came in. They were unwashed and poorly dressed, but I noted that they hadn’t come in off the trail as there was no dust on them. They took a seat at the other end of the table and ordered food.
“One of them called to us, ‘What outfit are you with?’
“The big Y,” I said, “just got in.”
“Did you sell your cattle?”
“The boss did.”
“How much did you get?
“Don’t know. Ask him.” And I didn’t know, but even if I had, I wouldn’t give any such information to someone I didn’t know, especially men like these. They could well be gathering information to see how successful a robbery might be.
“Come on, tell us” the man persisted.
Andy spoke up, “Would you believe, $60 a head!”
“Everyone knew that was not possible, and his answer irritated the three. One of them began to needle Andy until he lost his temper.
“When Andy jumped to his feet to pull out his pistol, his antagonist drew before him, but never got his gun high enough to shoot. My six shooter was out earlier and I shot the gun right out of his hand.
“Andy’s gun hadn’t even cleared leather before it was all over; he would have been dead for sure. I swung my gun over to cover the other two. ‘Don’t try anything foolish, if you don’t want to suffer a fate worse than your friend. Now get him up and all of you leave here pronto!’
“They immediately obeyed. Picking up the wounded man, who was holding his hand and moaning, they left. ‘I’ll get you for this,’ he yelled as they went out the door. And I knew he meant it.”
“Now, I was a stranger in the town, while these men were locals who had friends, knew the layout and would probably try to set a trap for me. What was I to do? Should I cut and run?
Should I let fear decide for me? No, I decided to let faith decide. That is, I decided to be sincere in my faith. “
“This word ‘sincere’ in the original language of the New Testament Greek, means ‘without wax.’
“In those times if a potter made a bowl and it cracked during the firing process, he would often rub wax into the crack and then cover that with some clay so the crack couldn’t be seen. The buyer would have no idea there was a problem with the pot until something hot was poured into it; then the wax would melt and whatever was in the pot would run out.
“To be sincere means to be without wax, that is, to avoid being a hypocrite, instead to be one who is solid in belief and action. It means that under pressure you won’t melt and run away from your stated values. It means you always live what you say you believe. So I trusted God and decided to stay, which brought another adventure into my life.”
Picture: the log cabin restaurant