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Cover 35


March 2011


Lives on Loan:
The Importance of Christian Stewardship


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Free Will Baptist
History Resources






“Are you identical twins?”

The attractive, gray-haired lady had to repeat her question before I realized she was talking to me.

Puzzled, I raised a questioning eyebrow. She smiled and pointed.

I glanced across the aisle to catch a startled look from a face remarkably like my own—blue eyes, crooked nose, unruly blond hair, and graying gotee. It was like looking into a mirror. Poor guy.

The similarities continued past the first startled glance, from the 10 (okay, maybe 15) extra pounds to the way we were dressed—blue dress shirts, bright striped ties, dark suits and dress shoes. We carried Apple computers, similar overnight bags, and were drinking Diet Cokes.

As we stood to board the flight, we found ourselves eye-to-eye at the same height. I couldn’t help but smile, and then we both laughed. With the ice broken, he quipped, “Well, they say everybody’s got a twin.”

He even sounded like me.

We sat together on the plane. It just seemed natural. Curiosity steered our conversation, and we soon began to compare notes about our lives. That’s when the similarities came to an abrupt end.

After graduating with a specialized degree in international business and an MBA, he had worked his way up through the ranks into executive management for a Wall Street firm. While he never said he was wealthy, he made it easy to read between the lines (not to mention the high-dollar Italian suit and Cartier watch).

He sipped on Scotch while he told me that the high-pressure job and constant travel had been hard on his family. At age 43, he had just finalized his third divorce, with three children on two coasts and a fourth on the way. I cut him off halfway through his second drink when he began to brag about women and recent one-night stands.

Instead, I told him about my wife and daughter, life in Nashville, our house in the country, Ginger the basset hound, and my job as editor of ONE Magazine. I described our small country church, the mischievous children with whom we volunteer, and my excitement about an upcoming match with the church volleyball team.

He stopped drinking while I told him quietly about Jesus and what a difference He had made in my life. He didn’t ask any questions, and I didn’t push him. He simply leaned back in his chair and closed his eyes. He didn’t say another word the rest of the trip.

As we walked side by side up the breezeway toward the terminal, he glanced over at me with a strange expression. He started to speak, hesitated, then blurted out: “Take care, Twin. I wish I had your life.”

With that, he picked up his pace and soon disappeared in the throng of busy travelers. As I watched him go, I whispered to myself, “I hope you find what you are looking for, my friend.”


About the Writer: Eric Thomsen is managing editor of ONE Magazine. Send comments and observations about ONE to



©2009 ONE Magazine, National Association of Free Will Baptists