Wednesday, September 22, 2010

That's my story?

Do you ever wonder what heaven will be like? Do you wonder if we will be in such awe of who God is that nothing else around us will matter. We will not worry about looking for our relatives, we will not be taken aback by some professional athlete or rock star who strolls by on the streets of gold. Or, do you think we will have time to walk around and fellowship with each other for all of eternity? I am not sure which it will be. Needless to say this is leading up to a thought I had last week.

As my mind wandered about who I would want to hang out with if we get to do that, I thought I would want to hang out with the Apostles. That was until I really began to think about what that might be like. I started wondering what it would be like to hang out with these guys and just listen to them for a while. Could you imagine the stories they could tell. Could you imagine some of the details they could expose. Philip could tell us what it was like to be miraculously transported by God after witnessing to the Ethiopian eunuch:
Acts 8: 39, 40 - 39When they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord suddenly took Philip away, and the eunuch did not see him again, but went on his way rejoicing. 40Philip, however, appeared at Azotus and traveled about, preaching the gospel in all the towns until he reached Caesarea. 
What went through Philip's mind as this was happening? Did it ever happen again? Did he ever run in to the Ethiopian again? Question after question after question.

Then I think about Paul. Wow, I bet he could tell some stories. Stories about being shipwrecked, stories about being imprisoned. And details, I bet he could make us feel like we were right there with him. We could almost smell the damp, dark prison where he was kept. We could ask him about other challenges he faced, maybe some that were not recorded for us to read about. Maybe we could find out what happened to his nephew:
Acts 23: 16 - But when the son of Paul's sister heard of this plot, he went into the barracks and told Paul.
How old was his nephew when this happened? Did he see what Uncle Paul went through in his life and follow in his footsteps?

This seems like it would be kind of cool until Paul or Philip or James or (name your favorite Bible hero) looks at you and says "Tell me about your story. You heard and read mine, now tell me yours. Tell me what you went through for the Gospel." Yikes! What did I go through for the Gospel? Well....I went to church on Sundays! I went to a men's Bible study on Tuesday evenings! Ummm, I served in the nursery and had a kid spit up on me once! I wonder what these guys would look like as they listened to this! Would they have that, I cannot believe I am hearing this!, look on their face? Would it be the, You can't be serious!, look?

I'm not sure this would happen in heaven, but I'm not sure it won't. I do not think we should do something radical for the Gospel just so we could have a cool story to tell in heaven. But what if we took the examples of the Apostles laying down their lives for the Gospel and Jesus' command to pick up our cross and follow Him seriously? There will be some who choose to do that, and I hope I am one, I hope you are one as well. Who knows, maybe we will run in to each other in eternity and talk about how our lives radically changed one day. There is an old catchphrase that says "That's my story and I'm sticking to it!" Maybe today you and I can take some steps that will allow us to say "That was my story but not anymore!"

1 comment:

  1. You know, I never thought about how the deciples would consider my personal "God Stories" or even compared mine to theirs. I do know, however, that my heart has changed dramatically because God is apart of my daily life and without Him... my "story" would be so different.
    Thank you for sending me down another road of thoughts! I enjoy your connections to the scripture!
    Love, a