Monday, June 18, 2012

A Free Banquet

As we checked in, we were told that "as a courtesy to timeshare owners", they offered a one hour presentation of all the new upgrades and services to us. They wanted to schedule time for us to come for this wonderful event.
"We would prefer not," I said.
"Really?" said the receptionist, "It takes less than an hour and to compensate you for your time, we give you checks for $100 to use at area restaurants. "
"Book us," I said.

So we got that over with immediately. Yesterday at noon, we showed up. The agent assigned to us noticed in our records that every year they do their sales pitch, and every year we collect our bonus, and run.
"This will be the last year we will be doing this with you all," she told us.
No more free dinners!? She was on to us. She knew we were not going to buy anything, we knew we were not going to buy anything- so after 15 minutes, she handed us our $100 and sent us on our way. We have a choice of 5 restaurants, each with $30 a plate menus. We would not normally eat at such pricey places, but we have all looked on line, planned out our meal, and are happily anticipating a luscious free meal tonight at a place overlooking the water. Life is good.

We biked along the ocean till we found a peaceful spot, far from the maddening crowd. There were few people in that more remote section, further from the public beach. But happily there was a lifeguard. I sat in my little beach chair, watching Asherel skim board, as the tide slowly rolled in. I had to keep dragging my chair further up the shore to keep from being engulfed. When it hit the lifeguard stand, she noticed two chairs, a purse, and beach towels, about to be consumed by the water. She looked around, could not see the owners, and began to rescue the things. When they were all safely on higher ground, I told her, "That was nice of you."
"Well they would have floated away," she laughed.
"Have you ever had more serious rescues?" I asked.
"Not yet, thankfully," she said.
That was comforting, I thought, watching my daughter bobbing on the waves. It was not surprising to know that someone who would desire to save people from the dangers of the water would be concerned about their possessions as well. And I began to consider the One who saves souls. It is not surprising that He, who is concerned about our eternal spirit, would be concerned about our earthly existence. He who gives a new heart, and a new spirit, is certainly able to give us a free banquet every day. I smiled at the envelope with the $100 voucher for dinner. This free banquet was obvious, but I receive symbolic free banquets everyday, I thought, as I watched my family smiling in the waves.

Ezekiel 18:30-32 (NIV)
“Therefore, you Israelites, I will judge each of you according to your own ways, declares the Sovereign Lord. Repent! Turn away from all your offenses; then sin will not be your downfall. [31] Rid yourselves of all the offenses you have committed, and get a new heart and a new spirit. Why will you die, people of Israel? [32] For I take no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Sovereign Lord. Repent and live!

-save a dog-

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