It was getting close to lunch time and I was hungry. I asked the ticket man if he would like to get a bite to eat. He said he knew a great little spot just around the corner called “Twelve Baskets.”
“That’s an unusual name,” I said.
“It refers to the baskets of bread left over after Jesus fed a crowd of people long ago,” he said.
“It’s the place of choice for lots of ticket holders.”
“Lead the way,” I said.
As we entered the cafe, the ticket man nodded his greeting to people he obviously recognized, but as we were seated, he seemed to be looking for one particular person.
“Are you supposed to meet someone here?” I asked with a little disappointment.
“No,” he responded, “but I was hoping he would be here so I could introduce you.”
“Who?” I asked.
“A man I think can help you with some of the questions you have about your ticket.”
We ordered lunch and engaged in some small talk. I had so many questions for him, but I just didn’t know where to start.
Halfway through our meal, the ticket man looked up and said, “There he is—the man I want you to meet.”
The ticket man waved at him, and he came over to the table. The ticket man explained that I was a new ticket holder with lots of questions.
“Be glad to help in any way I can,” said the gentleman. “Stop by my table when you are done, and we can talk.”
“Thank you very much,” I replied.”
I finished lunch with the ticket man, who said, “Sorry to eat and run, but I need to get back to the park.”
“And I need to get over and talk with your friend,” I said. “Thank you for spending so much time with me.”
“My pleasure,” he responded.
I looked around to see where the gentleman was seated. He motioned me over. I headed in his direction, not knowing I was about to begin an amazing journey.
I sat down, stuck out my hand, and said, “I’m sorry, but I didn’t catch your name when we were introduced.”
“You can call me Stan,” he responded. “How do you happen to be here today?”
I told him about getting my ticket and going to the train station, then to the park. “All that’s happening to me is new and foreign,” I continued. “I don’t really know what’s going on.”
He nodded knowingly, with a kind smile. “When I first got my ticket, I had no idea what it meant,” he said. “I didn’t go to the train station as you did; I simply didn’t know what to do or where to go.”
“Did you ever find out?”
“Yes,” he said. “Some very kind ticket holders, who had been down the same road, took time out of their busy lives to help me. They were so helpful that I decided to spend my life doing the same.”
Then, more solemnly, he asked, “Are you interested in finding out what this ticket is all about?”
“Absolutely,” I replied. And so it began.
Bible verses to consider:
Iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. Proverbs 27:17.
So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure. Philippians 2:12-13.
Prayer: Thank you, Father, for new beginnings. Thank you for your provision of life eternally with you when it’s time. And thank you for your provision of people to help others understand what you have for them while they wait to join you in eternity. I want to know, receive, and embrace all you have for me. Please help me follow every step of your lead, as you show me those steps through all you bring into my life. Thank you I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.
Think on this: Having a spiritual mentor is a great step in knowing how to proceed down the path from conversion towards spiritual maturity. Do you have such a mentor? Would you like one? Why or why not? What are the ways to find one?