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15 August 2010

Faithful in a '69 Chrysler Newport

I regret that I can't find the text or a YouTube clip of the stand-up comedian I'm about to talk about. That would give this a whole lot more humor. Therefore, this is not a word-for-word retelling. It's kinda like trying to explain a comic strip to someone on the phone.

This unnamed comedian asked the crowd, "By a show of hands, how many of you would donate a kidney for a friend?" There were apparently a number of people who raised their hands. He then asked with a perfect tone of irony, "Then how come you won't even give them a ride to work?!" (He went on to talk about the perceived annoyances of carpools.)

It's interesting how we imagine ourselves to be pretty heroic or good most of the time, but when it comes down to nuts-and-bolts everyday life, we're typically less than willing to put our money where our mouths are.

"If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones. But if you are dishonest in little things, you won’t be honest with greater responsibilities. And if you are untrustworthy about worldly wealth, who will trust you with the true riches of heaven? And if you are not faithful with other people’s things, why should you be trusted with things of your own?" (Jesus, in Luke 16:10-23, NLT)

I remember being 16 and driving my family's 1969 Chrysler Newport, an exceedingly large, canary-yellow car (I regret that I couldn't find a photo of a yellow one. The amazing retro ad comes courtesy of Daniel Bode at fuselage.de - thanks, Daniel!). I often asked my dad for a car of my own. At certain points in our conversations I remember him saying, "Dean, you won't even take care of the car you drive now. You wouldn't take care of your own." (What, was he reading stuff Jesus said?!) And I, of course, would exclaim, "It's not the same thing! If I had a car of my own I'd take great care of it!"

Funny thing is, my dad turned out to be right.

"If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones." I say we should focus a lot more on honoring the Lord in the "little" stuff. It's just possible that Jesus meant what He said.

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