A friend of mine recently told me a story about a couple named Ed and Nora.
Ed and Nora went to the state fair and they saw that you could ride in a helicopter for $50.00.
Ed said to his wife Nora, “You know I’m an old man and I will probably never have another opportunity to ride in a helicopter.”
Nora said, she didn’t think it was a good idea, in fact, she told her husband Ed, “Fifty bucks is fifty bucks.”
The helicopter pilot heard the conversation and said, “Listen, I will give you a free ride but you have to remain silent the whole time you are in the helicopter.” He said, “If you say anything during the ride you will have the pay the $50.00.”
The couple agreed and so the helicopter pilot gave them the ride of their lives, he did loops, flew them upside down, he pushed all the limits. Finally, they landed.
After they landed, the helicopter pilot said, “I can’t believe you didn’t say a word during that ride, oh well, the ride is free.”
“To be honest,” Ed said, “I almost did say something when Nora fell out, but then, fifty bucks is fifty bucks.”
I would never use the word practical to describe Jesus and yet in Matthew 15 after He feeds the four thousand it says they collected the “leftovers.” I’m not a leftover guy so this perplexes me. This may be the one thing I don’t like about Jesus if you know what I mean (just kidding, but not really).
In Matthew 8 after this wild, radical Messiah calms the storm it says, “they marveled,” and said, “What sort of man is this, that even the winds and sea obey Him?” I’m writing this early Monday morning (I’m not a morning person) and I’ve got the Monday blues (it’s a pastor thing that I’m not supposed to share). I'm on my third cup of Cafe du Monde and when it's gone I'm breaking out the Snapple - my point is, I’m thinking about this guy who says, “Follow Me.” Who is He and why do we do what we do?
In C. S. Lewis’s The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, Lucy is about to meet Aslan the lion who represents Christ in the book. She asks Mr. Beaver, “Is he safe?” “Safe?” says, Mr. Beaver, “Who said anything about safe? Of course, he’s not safe, but he’s good. He is the King.” Following Jesus is not safe but it’s always good.
Romans 8:31 says, “What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?” In my Bible, I have a line marked through the word us and replaced it with my name. “If God is for little Kenny, who can be against little Kenny.” If this omnipotent God is for me, Monday is no match. It’s called faith. Onward Christian soldier! He told me to tell you that.