Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Embarrassment (01/12/12)
TITLE: Forgetting What Lies Behind
By Allison Egley
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"More like 'Earth Videos,'" Andrew said.
"Eh... yeah. Whatever. Ooo, we're getting to my favorite part."
Eleven pairs of eyes turned to him.
"Your favorite part?" James asked. "The only thing this video shows is our own stupidity."
"Eh... I don't know if I'd call it stupidity as much as ignorance," Peter said.
"Okay. Same thing. It's still embarrassing," James said.
"Yeah, but you know what they say, 'Some day you'll look back on all of this and laugh.'"
"There's only one flaw with your logic, Peter," Andrew said.
"That phrase generally refers to something you found embarrassing at the time."
"Right," James confirmed. "And at the time we weren't embarrassed."
"I still can't believe it," John said. "We had all just seen...."
"Uhh...." Matthias interrupted, holding up a finger in protest "In my own defense, I was not yet a disciple of Christ."
"Technicality," John said, rolling his eyes. "Anyway, as I was saying, all... most of us had just seen Jesus feed 5000 and then 4000 people..."
"Men." Matthias corrected.
"Oh, look who chimes in, 'Mr. I Wasn't There,'" John ribbed Matthias. "If I could please now continue without interruption..." John glanced sideways at Matthias.
"Continue," Matthias said.
John took a deep breath. "We had just seen Jesus feed two very large crowds.... the exact numbers aren't important.... and here we were worried because we didn't have any food on our boat."
"How could we have been so stupid?" James said.
"Oh no. Not this part," Peter said, hiding his face in his hands.
"Hey, if you're not going to get embarrassed by that last video, we've got to watch this one," Andrew said.
"But I did know Him," Peter said. "I did know Him. I do know Him. Forgive me, Lord."
The eleven gathered around Peter. "Hey, it's okay. I'm sorry. We shouldn’t have showed that one," James said. "Besides, you've been forgiven. Long, long ago."
"Yes, I have. By the grace of God, I've been forgiven. It's just.... I'm amazed when I think about what I once was and who I am now, in Christ. It's a miracle. And one I didn't deserve."
"None of us deserved it. That's what makes it so amazing." Luke said.
Peter looked over his shoulder and screamed. "Take cover!" The twelve ducked behind the sofa, just as Paul launched himself onto it, occupying the space where Peter, James, and Andrew had just been sitting.
"Hey, what's up?" Paul asked. "You watching 'Earth Videos' again?"
"Yep. And embarrassing ourselves by commenting about how stupid we once were," Peter said.
"That reminds me," Paul said. "Can we watch my conversion again?"
"Oh, lets! That's one of my favorites," Peter exclaimed.
"I think they're all your favorites," James said.
"Shhhh." Paul put a finger to his mouth. "It's my favorite part. The light, the booming voice, I fall over blind... Classic. Just classic."
"Well, that was fun, guys, but I've got choir practice," Luke said. "Same time tomorrow?"
"Tomorrow? What do you mean, tomorrow?" Peter asked. "We've got all of eternity to enjoy this. Don't rush it." And with that, Peter took a flying leap at Paul, pulling him off the couch. "That's what you get for disturbing my reminiscing."
This story came out of a conversation I once had on a college summer retreat. While studying the book of Mark, one of the guys in my group joked about the Disciples watching "home videos" in heaven, and commenting about how "stupid" they were. While I don't believe that our earthly failures will be brought to mind again in heaven, this was a peek into "What if..." because we all know that here on earth we focus just a bit too much on the "What if" and on our past failures.
Philippians 3:12-14 (NASB)
Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus. Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
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