Liz Hall ® 2017
Liz is a founding member of the Kingdom Writers Ministry of VCC, and is the Vice-President of the Chapter Board. She has written extensively, been published on multiple occassions, and is the author of a published memoir/tribute. She is the director of the VCC Singles Ministry, is a lover of all things outdoors, of music, of dogs and of her family.
As I drove down a familiar street early one morning I noticed smoke coming from a building I had driven by many times. It was a large structure and had been reconstructed into individual apartments. I’m not sure how many people lived there but I had always guessed it was quite a few based on the number of cars in the adjacent lot and the activity in and around the place.
Seeing the smoke my heart began to race and I quickly pulled over, slammed the car into park and ran towards the front entrance. This was dangerous; someone had to warn these people. Not thinking I ran into the foyer and surprisingly through a door into the hallway. I frantically began knocking on doors.
To my dismay the first few doors did not open in response to my knocking and I didn’t know if there was anyone home or if they just chose not to respond. Were they sleeping? Did they not hear me? How could I warn them of the danger if they did not respond? Desperate to get the message out I moved on.
I felt relieved as the next few doors were opened by occupants who received my warnings and left for safety outside of the building. I was so thankful they were free from danger, but within a few minutes I saw that once they were safe a few decided they had left something of importance behind and returned inside towards the imminent danger. “No”, I pleaded, “don’t go back, stay safely outside”, but I could not dissuade them from returning to the burning building.
I continued on. Incredulously, there were some who opened their doors but upon not knowing who I was did not believe me. They did not smell the smoke and were not alarmed by the commotion; they were convinced the message was not for them. They had no visible proof of smoke or fire and decided they could just go about their lives convinced they would be ok. I begged, pleading with them to please come away from the danger. I warned them that staying meant they may be consumed by fire, smoke and impending death. I told them I knew the way out and they could be free from this danger, but it seemed as though they neither heard nor understood my words.
I quickly moved to other doors and floors in the building. Some people had already smelled the smoke and were on their way to safety. As other apartment doors opened in response to my knocking the occupants who were warned of the smoke and impending flames heard and understood. They responded accordingly. They heeded my words and fled the danger heading towards the outside where they could be free from being burned, overtaken by smoke inhalation or possible death.
In the end some were saved but sadly some were not. They all received the same message of danger that could lead to death but all did not hear or respond.
Jesus said “Though seeing, they do not see; though hearing, they do not hear or understand. In them is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah: ‘You will be ever hearing but never understanding; you will be ever seeing but never perceiving’. For this people’s heart has become calloused; they hardly hear with their ears, and they have closed their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts and turn, and I would heal them” Matt 13: 13-15