Meet Chuck. He’s just your everyday, average guy who lived in Galilee in around 30 A.D. He’s got a nice little fishing boat tied up between the huge, SUV sized one belonging to Simon and the tricked-out sports model belonging to the crazy Zebedee boys. He was with these friends when Jesus came to town, and watched in amazement when he cured Simon’s sick mother-in-law. He heard Jesus call each of his friends to be disciples, and watched them leave everything to follow Him. Chuck wanted to go with them, but Jesus took him by the shoulder.
Jesus said, “I need you to stay right here.”
So Chuck stayed. Years passed and he married an average girl and had a couple of average kids. He continued to hear stories about Jesus, how he cast out demons and healed the sick. Chuck knew they were part of something special, so whenever Jesus and His disciples came back into town, he’d ask again if he could come with them.
Christ would smile, but shake His head. “I need you to stay right here.”
One day dreadful news reached the fishing village. Jesus had been crucified. Chuck cried and cried, knowing that the world had lost a good man, a miraculous one. But his surprise turned to astonishment when Simon, now named Peter, returned to the village with miraculous news. Christ risen from the dead, and that His Spirit lived in the hearts of all who believed in Him.
More years passed, and things got tougher for the followers of Jesus. Important men came to Chuck’s town, ridiculing him and trying to make him recant his story. But Chuck never wavered. He’d seen what he’d seen, and he told what he’d witnessed about Jesus to anyone who would listen. Chuck told his stories over and over, never wavering, until the day he died.
In Heaven, Christ led him to a gigantic mansion, as big as any of his disciples. “This isn’t my house!” he exclaimed. “I’m just an average man. I didn’t do anything important.”
“You obeyed me. You stayed behind and told people about me, even when they laughed at you. Your testimony has gone into my Scriptures, and your stories about me will be repeated for generations.” Jesus smiled as he added, “You told the truth, and with you my Father is well pleased.”
Chuck looked at the mansion in disbelief. “Are you sure you don’t want me to go to one of the smaller places?”
Jesus smiled. “I need you to stay right here.”
Sometimes, when we are in the midst of crazy or crushed by worry, it’s good to remember that we are all important in the living body of Christ’s church. We each have a Gospel story, our “Good News’ of what Christ has done in our own lives. It’ll never make the papers. It might make us unpopular. All the Lord asks is that we stand up for Him, and do whatever we are doing for His Glory..
“Be on guard. Stand firm in the faith. Be courageous. Be strong. And do everything with love.”
1 Corinthians 16:13-14