Keys to the Kingdom – by Carolyn Tucker
My brother is a retired pastor who lives out-of-state and he recently wrote and sent the following true story to me. He kindly gave permission to have it printed and I pray it will speak to your heart, as it did mine.
At first it sounds like a real neat story about a conversion experience, although a dumpster isn’t the ideal place for such an encounter. But, no, this isn’t about a salvation experience. Being allowed to use the church dumpster after our retirement from pastoring was a privilege for us, even though to some it would be a trivial matter, to say the least. My weekly trip to the church dumpster was usually very uneventful. Occasionally, a stray cat would emerge from the debris when the cover had been left open. But nothing of that nature showed up on this given day. However, what did show up completely took me by surprise.
I stood in front of the dumpster and lifted the lid and there he was! I froze where I stood; unable to move for a second. Completely startled, I immediately wondered, “Now how did you get here?” It was Jesus! A perfect picture on canvas of Jesus Christ — frame, glass and all. Not a defect anywhere, no scratches, no tears, no repairs from the past. Oh, there was indeed a past, as I remembered that very same framed picture, of over 50 years ago, hanging on the wall of the church where my family attended. It was a 16×20 framed canvas painting. This was not just an ordinary portrayal of the Savior, but an authentic picture of Jesus knocking at the door, signed by Warner Salmon of Chicago, 1892-1968. It was entitled “Christ at the Door” dated 1942. It was a rendering of Revelation 3:20, “Behold I stand at the door and knock: if any man hear My voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with Me.”
I gently retrieved the unblemished masterpiece and looked at each detail. The portrayal was of Christ standing at the door, knocking to enter. Perhaps the dumpster experience was a reminder that Jesus, once again, is at the door ready to make His descent from heaven the next order of business. Sad to say, many people have placed Jesus in the dumpster of life — discarded, unknowing, and uncaring about Him. But this will not prevent the King of kings and Lord of lords from coming to claim His own!
The next time you see a dumpster, perhaps you will think of this true story. What became of the discarded portrait of Christ? It now hangs on a wall in our home as a constant reminder of His imminent return.
The Key: Jesus is coming soon. If He is knocking at your heart’s door, let Him in. Be ready!