Spiritual Giants or Regular Folks?
In a world that makes us often feel like we do not fit or that we are not good enough, pretty or handsome enough, rich enough, it is so very good to know where we can go to find others just like us.
I am about to give you a list of what the world would call “failures”, you know those people who probably would not amount to much in life: (at least from some people’s perspectives)
Adam and Eve broke the rules and then lied and hid
Abraham lied and pimped for his wife
Sarah laughed at God and disbelieved Him
Moses stuttered and was a murderer
David’s armor did not fit, he was too young
Hosea’s wife was a prostitute
Jacob was a liar and wrestled with God so his name was changed to Israel (he who wrestles with God)
David had an affair and was a murderer
Solomon had 700 wives and 300 concubines
Job was a whiner
Jesus was poor
Abraham and Sarah were too old to have babies
Lazarus was dead
Naomi was a widow
Ruth was an outsider
Rahab was a prostitute
Jonah ran away from God
Gideon and Thomas doubted God
Jeremiah was depressed
Elijah burned out and wanted to die
Samson had long hair
Paul was a murderer
Noah got drunk
Timothy was too young
Philip Yancey says: “You learn a lot about a person by the friends he selects, and nothing about God is more surprising than His choice of companions.”
Yes the above list of names are some of Gods favorite people, it is a list from the Bible, some of our spiritual “giants.” So you see, you and I are in good company, if God chooses to call these folks “friends”, and the fact that He used those people mightily to serve Him, there is hope for us.
The coolest thing is that God used them before, get this please, before He asked them to change, shape up or measure up – God accepted them just as they were – faults and all. You see that is who God is, He loves us, you and me other people as they are. His whole goal throughout all of the Bible, from cover to cover is to have a relationship with people. It is totally not about “religion”, with its finger pointing rules; it is all about “relationship” - ours and Gods.
I have heard and observed over the past few years that folks do not think the Old Testament is relevant in today’s society and world. I have had to question this.
Most of the names mentioned on the list are from the Old Testament. It is the Old Testament that gives us the history of the world, civilization and cultures. It has wars, famines, murders, songs, poetry, sex scenes that should make you blush and promises to hold on to. It reads a lot like some of today’s newspapers, the Old Testament contains a lot of “real life.” How much more relevant can that be?
In the world of today, where so much around us does not make sense, where private lives are exposed and exploited on the media, where the media is exploited for political biases, and we wonder just how are we supposed to live, who are we supposed to believe and we try to blunder along on our own. It is refreshing to read the above list and sit back and breathe a sigh of relief that God’s got this, He knew the faults of “those” people and He knows yours and He absolutely loves you anyways. He used messed up people in the past and as a matter of fact called them “friends” – this should give us a sense of relief but also a sense of wonder to just how God might be able to use you too.
Will you let Him?
 The Bible Jesus Read, Philip Yancey