Who is Called?
By Dr. Carol J Miller
OBJECT: Bring a baseball and glove, if you can.
When I went to grade school, some time ago, a bunch of neighborhood kids would get together to play baseball. [Put on the glove a toss the ball into it a few times as you talk about baseball]. They would pick two captains and the captains would take turns choosing kids to be on their teams. The captains would pick the best hitters first, and then choose the good fielders or runners. The kids who weren’t good at sports, or weren’t as popular got picked last. The last two to be chosen would stand there, staring at the ground, trying not to look embarrassed. We all knew who would be chosen first and who would be chosen last.
When Jesus started his work, he decided to choose twelve special helpers. We call them the Apostles. Well, I’ll bet a lot of people thought they knew just what kind of people Jesus would choose. This was a very important job, so what kind of people do you think Jesus might have chosen? (Accept all answers). A lot of people probably thought he’d choose the smartest people—maybe teachers or principals. Perhaps he’d choose people who knew how to do special things, like doctors or nurses. Maybe he’d go with the most popular, the best looking, the strongest; maybe the mayor or a famous mountain climber.
But Jesus didn’t do that at all. He chose some people who spent all their time fishing with big nets so they could sell fish to the villagers. He chose a couple of people known for their quick tempers. By the time he collected all 12, he had a tax collector—whom a lot of people did not like; he had someone who wanted to throw the Romans out of the country, and he even had a cheater and coward named Judas. He picked ordinary, everyday people—not the best looking, not the smartest, not even the especially good people. He chose some of the people who usually get picked last.
Why do you think Jesus did that? I think Jesus chose the twelve, not because they were good, but because Jesus can make anyone an important member of his team. He fills us with God’s love and caring and all of a sudden ordinary folks like all of us can do what God needs done. Jesus chooses us and he makes us able to do important things for him. God has been choosing ordinary people for thousands of years. And now he has chosen me and he has chosen you to make God’s love known to everyone.
Copyright 2012, Richard Niell Donovan