Updated: Oct 12, 2021
“You deserve a new car, Grandpa,” my very well-meaning son, Matt, told my dad. He loved his Grandpa Les and the idea of him driving around in a fancy new car. Their time together was filled with love and fun adventures, often including great Cuban food and pastries.
So when his grandpa was looking to buy a new car, Matt easily disregarded dollar signs and jumped right to the expensive luxury car models. In his wonderful adolescent eyes, if anyone deserved a nice car, it was his grandpa.
My dad loved Jesus! He could hardly ever teach or preach without his emotions spilling over in awe and gratitude for His Savior. He would exclaim, “Why would Jesus love someone like me?” and I would scratch my head and look at Dad and think, “If anyone deserves His love, it’s you.” I know it’s not true — but it was hard to think of my father as a terrible sinner. I, on the other hand…
So, I whole-heartedly agreed with my son, “You do deserve a really nice car, Dad.”
Les Thompson loved to teach and help others discover God’s majesty, grace, and love. He was especially good at giving credit where credit was due. I was traveling with him once in Latin America when we came across some street dancers. A small crowd had gathered to watch the dancers spin and twist in amazing displays of rhythm and dexterity. After watching for a bit and leaving a few dollars in the tip jar, we walked away with Dad joyfully exclaiming how he had just worshiped the Lord. “They may not know it,” Dad said, “but they just glorified God by using gifts He gave them.”
Dad helped me understand there is absolutely nothing we can see, hear, feel, taste, do, accomplish, or experience without God’s amazing DNA. My Dad has joyfully impacted the lives of thousands of pastors and leaders across our “LOGOI world” for the Gospel. Les's work helped our LOGOI national missionaries then –and now– to better understand God’s amazing DNA. His lifelong mission has joyfully impacted my own life as well.
How could I not agree with Matt? “You deserve a fancy new car, Dad.”
But looking into the eyes of his grandson, my dad’s eyes filled with tears. “No, Matt,” he said as his voice clutched, “I do not deserve a nice new car. What I deserve is Hell.”
Matt’s eyes (and mine) popped open as wide as possible leaving us both speechless. How in the world did we get from the purchase of a “new car” to the depths of Hell?
As you can imagine, Dad’s answer to his beloved grandson that day left a deep and profound impact on his life (and mine). In just a few words he helped us understand it doesn’t matter how talented or successful, how much we’ve accomplished or even what “great things” we’ve done for the Lord. Every time we hear anyone say we “deserve” anything, we instantly remember what we truly deserve.
Of course, the lesson that day didn’t end with what we deserve. The lesson ended with a reminder that “God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16). The lesson was about what Jesus has done for us.
That is our goal at LOGOI, too. It is so we can be a part of helping others discover Jesus. It is so we can help, encourage and equip pastors and teaching leaders all across the Spanish world to joyfully and boldly proclaim the Gospel. It is to help others know that because of Jesus, we will not get what we truly deserve, but we will be welcomed into His glorious Heaven — forever!
Thank you for being a faithful partner in proclaiming this amazing Good News! (If you wish to help Spanish-speaking pastors and leaders to proclaim the Gospel joyfully and boldly, please click on the images below.)
P.S. Dad did get a nice new car and we all enjoyed it for many years — especially Matt and me.