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Saturday, 16 July 2016

"Did I Really Say That?"

"Peter said to Him, 'Master, it is good for us to be here. Let us put up three shelters—one for You, one for Moses and one for Elijah.' He did not know what he was saying" (Luke 9:33).It's good to be home after my trip to the Southwest for a chaplain's conference. It's good to be back with my family, especially since I hurt my back a couple days ago and the pain became more intense after my long plane ride so it's great to have a loving wife care for me.

Crescent Hotel in Eureka Springs AR I really don't like to travel alone but this year Brooksyne chose to stay home to make our chaplain visits and carry out other local responsibilities. We usually travel together which has made for many memorable family trips. One of our family's favorite vacation memories took place about twelve years ago in Eureka Springs, Arkansas where we dined in the Crystal Dining Room of the historic Crescent Hotel.  After our delicious meal the harried server came to our table and asked, "Are you ready for deodorant?" Deodorant Rather embarrassed I offered, "I just took a shower this morning". Brooksyne and Ester were speechless. After the waitress replayed the words in her mind her face turned beet red, for what she really meant to ask was, "Are you ready for dessert?" Because she was in such a rush to get her words out apparently she had run "dessert" and "order" together and it came out "deodorant". We all had a good laugh at her funny gaffe. As we made our way back to Pennsylvania one of us would blurt out, "Are you ready for deodorant?" which got us laughing all over again. And, just in case you're curious, we did order deodorant, I mean dessert!

Have you ever said something and wondered afterwards, "Did I really say that?"

Transfiguration The story of the transfiguration comes to mind. It is an amazing Biblical account of Christ's glory.  Peter, James and John went up on a mountain to pray with Jesus. As Jesus was praying, the appearance of His face changed, and His clothes became as bright as a flash of lightning. Moses and Elijah, appeared in glorious splendor, as they talked with Jesus. They spoke about His departure, which He was about to bring to fulfillment at Jerusalem.

But I have always been intrigued by Peter's eager suggestion of putting up three shelters: one each for Jesus, Moses, and Elijah. What was he thinking! Was this his eager attempt to show hospitality? He would even provide them with their own private dwellings.

Luke candidly points out that Peter "did not know what he was saying." Mark adds, "They were so frightened" (Mark 9:6). We really don't know what Peter was thinking but we can all identify with feelings of inadequacy when we are fearful; when we're faced with circumstances that we've never encountered before, but feel that we must give a verbal response to the matter before us. Sometimes we just blurt it out before thinking it through!

God bears with us when we say what's on our mind; whether it's wise or foolish. After all, Peter went on to be one of the main spokesmen in the early church. God equips us with wisdom and insight from His Word that gives us further understanding for the unusual and unwelcome surprises we might encounter from time to time. The goodness of the Lord far surpasses our human limitations and frailties. So the next time you or someone you know says something really foolish remember this story and apply grace!

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber



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