The Price of an Expert Guide

On several occasions Bro. Gary Richards told me how much he loved experts.  He told me how much he enjoyed listening to them no matter what their field of expertise.  He sought them out in museums, art stores, theaters, coin shops, caves, reefs, everywhere he went.  He talked his way into the offices and storage rooms of many a curator.

On one occasion, he was alone and just off the plane in Cairo, Egypt.  All the passengers on the plane filed past a line of people holding signs that would hopefully connect tourists and their guides.  One sign reading “Gary Richards” seemed comforting, but only for a moment.  The holder claimed to be the Egyptologist that would be Bro. Gary’s one-on-one guide for the next week.  Rather than reassure Gary with some encouraging details about their upcoming itinerary, the man asked Gary for $700 in cash, the remaining balance for the trip.

How was Gary to know he wasn’t being scammed?  The only evidence he had that the man was legit was the “Gary Richards” sign and the tour guide badge hanging around the man’s neck.  Against all “street sense,” Gary went to the money machine, which coughed up a big wad.  Gary could hardly believe himself as he pivoted away from the money machine and surrendered the cash to this so-called guide. 

Thankfully, it turned out to be the right move.  Once home and telling us about his tour, Gary said the man proved to be an engaging guide with a doctorate in Egyptology.  He could hardly believe his good blessing to connect with such an expert.

To repeat, this little story is meant to illustrate for us how much Gary was willing to risk when connecting with an expert was on the line.  The fact is that a bank roll was not his upper end.  Money did not define his limit.  Close to fifty years ago Gary put a lot more on the line than a wad of cash.  He put his whole life on the line to connect with the expert of heaven and eternity, Jesus.  Right now, having just gone home to the Lord after his battle with cancer, he is very blessed that he chose Jesus as his guide through life.

1Cor. 15:58    Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.


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