The Good News of the Gospel

Sue and I just came back from a week’s vacation in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. As soon as we landed and went through customs, we were approached by a 23-year-old woman who wanted to invite us to a 70- minute vacation presentation at a five-star luxury hotel. To entice us, they promised a free morning breakfast, one-day car rental, a free water taxi ride to a fishing village, a free bottle of tequila and free taxi ride to our hotel and back to the airport a week later.

We liked free and took the bait. She picked us up the next morning and gave us a personal tour through the town of Puerto Vallarta, on the way to the hotel. There we met a sales lady who toured us through this beautiful facility with three towers and four pools, views over the Pacific and rooms of luxury and comfort.

What was not to like. We then went down to the sales room where we had the option of buying a suite outright, to investing in four weeks a year, two weeks a year, or the lowest bracket of one week. She then connected her hotel with seven others around Mexico, as well as five other main hotel chains, giving us access to countries around the world.

What I liked about the package was a financial commitment to planning vacations around the globe on a yearly basis. But we could not say yes. She then brought in a Canadian sales person who offered us a cheaper package one week every other year. After three hours, we finally said “no” to the package and commitment, but could definitely see its benefits and attraction. They worked hard on selling us good value, and we took solace in all our free gifts.

It made me think of our attempts of sharing and “selling” the gospel to neighbors and friends and sometimes family members and how disappointed we can feel when people continue to say “no.” The 23-year old lady who met us at the airport called us back the following day and offered to drive us to one of her free offers at Botanical Gardens.

She took her boyfriend along, and again, we had a most engaging tour by locals of Puerto Vallarta. We were able to talk about faith issues because her mom was deeply involved in the local Catholic Church, and of all things, her boyfriend was born and raised Presbyterian.

They both had a faith back ground, but were not practicing it together yet. It made me wonder how many more people around us, do not have faith backgrounds, and are simply waiting to be invited into a relationship, into a small group, into a ministry and church fellowship to grow that faith.

What is most amazing about the good news that we still have to offer, is, like all of our enticing freebee’s, the gift of salvation is still free. 

Peter Van Geest