06 2002

On Favorites, by Ron

Day before yesterday Max shared a brand new word with me . . . “favorite”. I’ve never heard him say it before. It’s kinda funny that his first use of the word was to describe a video he’d never seen before. He was carrying a video tape he had selected for viewing from a drawer of tapes. The tape didn’t even have a picture on it–just some random shows we’d recorded to watch, but Max wanted to watch the tape he’d chosen. I guess a it was a new strategy to use in an attempt to get the world to respond to what Max wanted (not that adults ever exhibit that kind of behavior–I can’t imagine where he picked it up.) I know what his favorite video is, we’ve seen it many times, sometimes more than twice in a day. I can sing all the songs to it–and it’s not my favorite video. I still don’t know where he got the word favorite–if I’ve used it around him, it was insignificant to me. Max has made the word significant.

Speaking of significance . . . last week in worship, we heard a sermon about a story that I’ve heard before. It had been a fairly insignificant story to me, but I doubt it’ll ever be insignificant again. It was the story of Cornelius from Acts 10. The turn of events in this story radically changed the church–we’d be a very different church without Cornelius. One of the central elements of the story is a vision from God. Some Bible stories seem pretty distant to me, because they happened so long ago. But as I listened to Cornelius’ story, I smiled, thinking of my friend, Adam (that’s not my friend’s real name.)

Adam and I are pretty different people. If you know me well, you know I’m pretty down to earth (though I’m really careful about saying what God doesn’t do). Adam, on the other hand, sees visions from God–nothing on the everyday sort of frequency, but about every ten or fifteen years, Adam has a vision that I believe comes straight from God. I’m not talking about a post-burrito kind of dream–I’m talking about a vision like right out of the Bible, that forces Adam to make sweeping changes in his life. Several months ago, I spoke with Adam about the events leading up to his most recent vision, about the vision itself, and about Adam’s response. It was an incredible story that took place over the course of two or three years. I can assure you that Adam was a faithful disciple before his vision, but Adam’s life has changed radically. Adam doesn’t share all the details of this story with many people, and I feel pretty privileged to know the whole story. When you know the whole story, you understand. Being faithful has had a high price tag for Adam. Adam had to lay it on the line. I’m not sure I want instructions that are that clear from God.

Adam’s and Cornelius’ stories are incredibly similar. Knowing Adam’s story has made Cornelius’ story come alive for me. My word for you is to be on the lookout for the significant–it’s out there. Read Acts 10 and think of my friend Adam, it’s still happening today.

God’s Peace, Ron

Ps I’m also more aware about my use of the word “favorite”.


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