Love Is More Than Blued Steel and Walnut
By Greg Quinn
August 13th, 2010
Gunblast.com is a gun test site. We started 10 years ago with three brothers from Tennessee who love guns, and who recognized that there was a large lack of honest reporting and integrity, and no Internet presence in the firearms industry. So, we started on a shoestring what was the first Internet gun test magazine, and what is now considered the ďConsumer ReportsĒ of the shooting sports industry, the largest gun test magazine (online or in print), and the one with the largest and widest audience, reaching more than 123 countries around the world. Who would have thought that, 10 years ago, three brothers from Tennessee could make this kind of impact? We didnít. We just love guns, and figured out how we could share our passion with others.
Gregís Corner started because God touched me in 1983, and called me into the Gospel ministry. A far from perfect human I was and still am, but God saw fit to find something in me worth saving, and worth using for His glory. Over the years Iíve been a Pastor, Interim Pastor, Minister of Music, Youth Pastor, Evangelist, and Church consultant. Iíve preached in all kind of churches, from large to small, from Baptist to Pentecostal. I started an online ministry program to reach youth in 1998. I worked in secular work from NASA to other advanced technology, all the way to early times in my career in a chicken plant. And, in 2000, two of my brothers and I started Gunblast.com. At the time we had no idea how this gun test site would grow. We just did it out of our love for guns. And, a few years later, God combined the success of Gunblast.com with my passion for sharing the love of Christ, and Gregís Corner was formed. Itís just another way to share something important.
When you get a new gun, you want to show it off and tell a friend. I know not long ago my brother Boge found me a 1957 model (my birth year) Ruger Single Six revolver. It was cool having a gun as old as me, but it was also cool having one in this good of a condition. The grips were original and in good shape. The action was very good. The bluing showed some sign of age, but to me looked better than new. Heck, the gun of 1957 was in much better condition than olí Greg of 1957. So, whatíd I do? I couldnít wait to show it off to my friends and family. To this day, itís one of my favorite guns, and sometimes I just take it out of my safe and look at it, smile, and put it back. And I want to show it to someone else.
Sharing the love of God should be very much the same. Love is more than blued steel and walnut. True love is when you care more about someone else than you do yourself. Jesus said that true love is when a man lay down his life for his brother. And, he didnít mean just your blood relatives, but another person that you may or may not know. Our mind cannot go this direction without a strong understanding of love. Once you get it, then youíll want to share this love. Just like sharing a fine old gun.
I think many people have a difficult time sharing their Christianity because they look at it wrong. Many have been taught to ďscareĒ someone into Heaven, but that rarely works. Some have been told to simply invite people to church, and while that is a good thing to do, it takes the opportunity away from you to simply tell a friend about how good God has been to you. Perhaps Iím simple minded, but I think if you can love a gun, and can tell your friends about how great this gun is, then you can share your faith. Like sharing the beauty of a finely tuned revolver, you can share the beauty of a changed life because Jesus touched you. And, not everyone needs a finely-tuned revolver, but everyone needs Jesus.
Think of your favorite gun. Perhaps itís an old-model Winchester Model 70, with beautiful wood and a great blued finish. The controlled-round feed action is slicker than new. The wood has a nice sheen and without a scratch. The blue has weathered a bit, but still is shiny and looks better than new. The old rifle has never let you down, and you can share many tales of you and your trusted friend in the woods together. You love this gun.
Maybe your favorite gun is a single-action Texas Longhorn Arms revolver, and like my brother Boge, you cannot get enough of them. Perhaps your favorite old Ruger is the same as his, the Single Six model in 22 caliber. Maybe itís like my beloved 1957 model, or one much newer (or even older). You appreciate the workmanship, you love shooting it, it fits your hand well, and itís comfortable. You love this gun.
Love is more than blued steel and walnut. But a fine gun is, well, mighty fine indeed. You can appreciate how something like a block of steel can be turned into something so beautiful as a cylinder or a barrel. You can appreciate how metal against metal never seemed so slick as when working a fine lever-action rifle. You can truly marvel at the fit and finish of a fine over and under shotgun, the way it looks, feels, and points. You can appreciate the workmanship, and the time and energy it took to take blocks of wood and steel and turn it into a work of art and engineering that will at the same time bring home dinner. Someone took something of little value, and with much love, turned it into something very valuable. Love built something you love.
Christianity is much the same way. God found us, and saved us from the depravity of our sinful lives, and through Jesusí sacrifice on the cross of Calvary, provided a renewed relationship between each of us and a Holy God. So, we began a journey of loving Jesus. We love Him so much, and are so appreciative of what God has done for us throughout our lives, and even today, that we can do nothing but share with others how great God really is. Weíve lived the lives of sinful pleasure (well, I have especially; my brothers are much better people than I), and can attest very honestly that there is nothing in this world that dares to compare with the joy of serving God. Nothing.
If you love something, you share it. You love your new Ford pickup, and cannot wait to show it off. You love a new (or new old) gun, and you cannot wait to take it to the field or woods, and to show it to your friends. I have a Browning 16 gauge that I love showing others. I have my old 1957 Single Six that I love to hand a friend. I have a 1958 unfired Ruger Blackhawk that I love to share. I have a shotgun that belonged to my dad that is precious, and I still have my first shotgun, the old Stevens that killed my first rabbit. I have fine 1911 Springfield semi-auto pistols, and modern Sig and FN pistols. I have a number of revolvers, all special in their own way, from Ruger to US Firearms to Cimarron to Smith & Wesson. I have shotguns of all chamberings, and numerous rifles of all types. I cannot think of a gun that I have that I do not like, and many I can say that I truly love. And, when you love something, you like to share it.
Maybe we donít share Jesus more because we donít love Him enough. If we truly bring to our memories what Jesus did for us, and how our lives have been changed, then we will find it easy to love Him, and easy to share Him with others.
Love is more than blued steel and walnut. Itís recognizing our relationship with a God that loved us so much that He gave His only Son to die deaths penalty, so that we could live forever. Now, thatís love. Jesus said, ďIf you love me, keep my commandmentsĒ. What are His commandments? Well, he summarized them best by saying to love God first, and love people next. Love God, then love others.
So, when you pick up that favorite gun, and enjoy its beauty, finish, and action, think about something even more lovely. A changed life. A vision to help others. A life of peace and joy through a love relationship with God. And, share this love.
If you cannot boast about knowing the love of God, please give me the opportunity to share this with you. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Iíd get more joy in showing you Jesus than in showing you my old Ruger '57 Single Six. One would change your life; guess which one?
Love is more than blued steel and walnut. Love is knowing God. You can experience this love today. And, you can share this love tomorrow.