The Orange Monks and The King

Here’s the first of several posts on Cambodia. I spent over three weeks in Cambodia back in 2005 when I was a college sophomore. It was an amazing trip. I was not as good at photography back then and I didn’t have a very good camera, so pardon the flaws in my photos. One thing that stood out to me when I was at Angkor Wat was the robes that the monks wore. They were an amazing shade of orange which contrasted nicely with everything else which was green or earthy-brown.

Also, on a side note, the monks are very friendly. They loved to talk with the tourists. I was told it was because they could practice their English. I didn’t mind. Actually most of the people there were ridiculously nice to me. As a red-haired white girl, I am as white as it gets, which made me practically a celebrity there. Old women were always touching my skin and children wanted to hug me.

One day I was looking at trinkets at the kiosks that were set up around the temples when a little girl ran up to me and grabbed my hand. She was in a hurry to tell me something very important, I could tell. She began to drag me to the road where a crowd had been for some time. As half my height she really couldn’t force me anywhere, but she was so serious that I went along with it. I asked her what was so important? As she began pushing me into the crowd she was saying “The king is coming! The king is coming!” It wasn’t until later that I realized what had happened. A fancy black car with escort cars drove by slowly with a middle aged man waving out of a window.

Here’s what had happened. The people in the town had heard that their king would drive through town sometime that day and so everyone (including school children because the schools were cancelled for this reason) was out on the roads waiting to catch a glimpse of their king. This little girl had been there, on the side of the road, all day waiting for her king. But when she saw that there was someone unaware of the king’s soon return, she immediately responded. Everyone must know that the king is coming. No one should be left unaware. Wow! She had pushed me into the prime viewing spot without without thought for herself. She wanted everyone to know that her king was coming!

I didn’t mean to tell this story here, but it is just so powerful. As Christian metaphors go, you can’t get a better one for proclaiming the news of Jesus’ second coming. Take advice from this little girl. If you see someone unaware of the soon second coming then drop whatever you are doing and immediately go tell them. Don’t stand, with your back turned to the world, waiting impatiently for His return. Like the little girl, she didn’t care what she had to do to get everyone to see her king.


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