Our Bible verse today: “Reuben went in and slept with his father’s concubine …” Genesis 35:22 (CSB)
Our thought for today: “Everybody’s normal – till you get to know them.”
There’s a great truth expressed in that statement – “Everybody’s normal – till you get to know them.” The fact is that we’re all a little weird. There really is no “normal”. After more than twenty years as a Pastor I’ve come to understand that every person is a little odd and every family has skeletons in their closets. Granted, some people are odder than others and some families have a literal boneyard going on, but still, we’ve all got stuff that we’d prefer others don’t know about. (As a Pastor I get to know a lot of that stuff. It’s kind of a side benefit to the job. The stories I could tell! Lol).
A Biblical case-in-point is told by Pastor John Ortberg in his 2003 book by that same title, “Everybody’s Normal Till You Get to Know Them”. In one section he tells the story of one of the great Biblical families – that of Jacob. Jacob was a bit of a scoundrel and a swindler. He had at least thirteen children by four different women. One son (Joseph) was sold into slavery by his brothers. Another son (Reuben) slept with his father’s mistress. Another son (Judah) slept with his own daughter-in-law and fathered a child by her. One daughter was raped and two sons then led a military expedition to wipe out the entire village that the rapist lived in. And those are just a few examples of the dysfunction in that family. John Ortberg writes, “These people need a therapist. These are not the Waltons. They need Dr. Phil, Dr. Laura, Dr. Ruth, Dr. Spock, Dr. Seuss – they need somebody!”
Feeling any better about your family?
The point is that we’re all a little weird – there really is no “normal”. And that’s a good thing. I’m glad there are no perfect people. It makes me feel better about myself.
I sometimes tease our folks at Oak Hill Baptist Church that we’re a lot like that place everyone has come to call “The Star Wars Bar”. The Star Wars bar was a place in the first Star Wars movie. Han Solo and Chewbacca go into this inter-planetary bar and we see that it is filled with an array of weird creatures from across the galaxy. One guy is purple and has two heads. Another is orange and has a single eye in the middle of his forehead. One creature looks like an octopus with tentacles sprouting from various places, and on it goes. Weird people. Funny looking people. But all of them somehow getting along.
That’s us! At our church we’re just an odd collection of unusual people, but somehow we all get along. So, if you’re looking for a church, I invite you to visit us. (I’m thinking you will probably fit right in.)
So there are no normal people. Nobody is normal because there really is no “normal”. Everyone is a little bit strange. So I encourage you to celebrate your weirdness today. Just be you – and enjoy it!