Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Does that answer the question

Even though I was once a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent man, I was shown mercy because I acted in ignorance and unbelief.
1 Timothy 1:13 (NIV)

They were five students with nothing in common, faced with spending a Saturday detention together in their high school library.

The 1985 movie "The Breakfast Club" follows five teenagers at a fictional suburban Chicago high school. While not complete strangers, the five are from different social groups. Criticized and ordered not to speak or move from their seats by their antagonistic principal, the students pass the detention hours telling stories, harassing each other, fighting, dancing, and speaking on a variety of subjects. Gradually, they open up to each other and reveal their inner secrets.

In response to an essay that Mr. Vernon had assigned--Who do you think you are?--the students leave a single letter that illustrates how their attitudes and perspectives changed during the course of the day. In one brief paragraph, they challenge their fault-finding principal's preconceived judgments about each of them as well:

Dear Mr. Vernon, we accept the fact that we had to sacrifice a whole Saturday in detention for whatever it was we did wrong, but we think you're crazy to make us write an essay telling you who we think we are. You see us as you want to see us--in the simplest terms and the most convenient definitions. But what we found out is that each one of us is a brain..and an athlete...and a basket case...a princess...and a criminal. Does that answer your question? Sincerely yours, the Breakfast Club.

The apostle Paul had been a Christian for more than 30 years. He had been on the road with the gospel message for 20. Yet in deep humility, he never forgot his bitter opposition to Christ and that he had once gone all out to destroy His church.

Paul never ceased to be amazed that God took a man like him into His service. In verse 15 of the first chapter of First Timothy, he writes, "Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance. Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners--of whom I am the worst."

At 7 a.m. on a brisk Saturday in March, five "breakfast club" misfits had nothing to say. By four o'clock the same afternoon, their judgments of one another had changed. They bared their souls to each other, realized they had much more in common than they realized, and became good friends.

Because of our sin, we are separated from the Lord and considered His enemies. But thanks be to God in Christ Jesus that when we confess our sin and acknowledge our need for His forgiveness, He shows us mercy and changes who we are.

Dear friend, Jesus' suffering, death, and resurrection answered the question once and for all--who do you think you are?

Blessings, dear friend.
Faithfully Following

PS For all you classic movie fans, I hope I didn't give too much of The Breakfast Club story line away...

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