Thornleigh Seventh-day Adventist Church (Sydney, Australia)

Home > Online Magazine > Online Magazine: Edition 20 - December 2007 / January 2008 > Spotted at Speed on Tweed

Spotted at Speed on Tweed

by John Morris

Spotted at Speed on Tweed -- Christians should not and cannot hide

I had dropped my luggage and booked my flight back to Sydney at the International Terminal at Nadi, after a week at Fulton College dealing with some building problems.  I returned the rental car and was walking back to the departure terminal when a female voice came from my left, from a group of Fijians who were waiting for the arrival of an international flight, "Hello John".  My mind went blank.  I did not have the faintest idea of who was talking to me.  It was a lady aged in her middle twenties.  All I could do was pass a general series of comments before moving off to the international terminal.  I had been spotted. It wasn't till I got back home and looked in the Makasoi, the Fulton College yearbook, that I found this lady was a teacher at Fulton College - how embarrassing.

Nearly thirty years ago the Morris family paid a visit to the Warrumbungle National Park in north-western NSW.  Cathy was aged nine, Marilyn was aged two.  We took the girls from the camp and walked up the heights past the Breadknife and on to the high tops overlooking the Breadknife.  Marilyn was travelling in my rucksack.  As we walked up the last fifty or sixty metres to the top we noticed a family talking together.  The son (about ten years of age)  was talking quite quickly to his father and pointing in our direction.  As we were the only ones walking on that part of the track, I wondered what was wrong with us.  We approached them at the top of the climb and the family introduced themselves.  They were fellow church members from Sydney and the young boy had noticed my Seventh-day Adventist Bushwalking Association chevron on my shirt.  We had been spotted.

September 16-19, 2005, saw Marcia and I in Murwillumbah to celebrate our grand-daughter R'chelle's transition to a teenager.  The weekend focus for Murwillumbah, coincidentally, was SPEED on TWEED, a weekend of car time trials around the city streets with supporting entertainment.  Sunday morning saw around 150 racing cars both  modern and vintage, and sports vehicles racing against the clock over a 500 metre track.

Saturday night was a big social event, the main street was closed to traffic and you could buy space for your family for an evening meal or attend one of the numerous restaurants in the area where the tables and chairs had been set up in the street, on the footpath, close to the various entertainment venues.  Even "Pavarotti" was in attendance and in good voice and along with other supporting artists provided delightful entertainment.

After we finished our meal, R'chelle, Craig and I were walking along the main street making our way through the tables and chairs when I received a tap on the shoulder from a gentleman of my own age.  "You're the 187 Quarter Sessions Road man, aren't you."  He was a one-time neighbor who had retired to Kingscliff  12 months ago and had come in to 'Speed on Tweed', for the weekend, with his wife and friends.  I had been spotted again.

A repeat visit in September 2007 saw Sir Jack Brabham on the stand and a photo opportunity with his 1960 winning Cooper Climax.

  God wants us to be seen, to be visible, and not afraid of being seen.  He wants us to be active in good deeds, so that those who observe us in action, will praise Him. "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven." (Matt 5:16 KJV)

In the beatitudes Jesus asks us to be the light of the world. "A city on a hill cannot be hidden" (Matt 5:14 NIV). If you ever go to Fiji you might try a drive up the Nausori Highlands east of Nadi airport. To get to the village of Nanoko you will need a 4WD unless you want to walk the last 2 km up hill. It is only 50 km from Nadi but it is a 2 hour drive. The Seventh-day Adventist church in the village is located on the side of a hill. It is readily visible across the valley from some 2 km away on the road in, and if you know what to look at, at night, from the coast near Nadi you can pick out the lights of the church. Jesus then changes the metaphor without spoiling the illustration, you do not put a light under a bowl, you put in on its stand so that the room can be fully lit. 

If you can't be a city, you can be a room lamp.  Remember, the lights of a city on the hill are a combination of a lot of smaller lights each doing its own job.

The metaphor changes again, through Paul, God asks us to be living letters of recommendation, "known and read by everybody" (2 Cor 3:2 NIV), written by the Spirit of God on living human hearts.  Living letters do not have to worry about being spotted.


Texts indicated as (NIV) are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version. Copyright 1973,1978,1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Bible Publishers.

This article and the pictures it contains are Copyright © 2007 by John L Morris.  Used by permission.

Home > Online Magazine > Online Magazine: Edition 20 - December 2007 / January 2008 > Spotted at Speed on Tweed