“You’ve missed a lot,” my friend said after I told her I did not know one of the women who would be coming. It wasn’t until I met her at the planning meeting that I understood the depth of that comment. Bubbling up out of this woman was contagious enthusiasm for children. She wanted them to have the best Vacation Bible School experience ever, and she stacked up creative ideas for us to make it happen.
I was glad I had not missed out on her exuberance. But I’ll never know what I missed out on another woman. That saddened her son.
“I wish you had known my mother,” he lamented as we sat down for the meal his wife had made. His mother was at the table, too, but in body only. Her mind was gone.
The demoniac Jesus cured got his mind back. However, this did not endear Jesus to those who had known the man as a raving maniac: “Later, a great many people from the Gerasene countryside got together and asked Jesus to leave–too much change, too fast, and they were scared. So Jesus got back in the boat and set off” (Luke 8:37 MSG). Blinded by uncertainties, the locals missed out on seeing the real Jesus. They didn’t know who He was.
“We didn’t know who You were” is the poignant theme of Robert MacGimsey’s 1934 song “Sweet Little Jesus Boy.” Although he wrote it in the style of a spiritual, MacGimsey was born in Pineville, Louisiana, of white parents. (I didn’t want you to miss out on that.)
No one has to miss out on who Jesus is. As He says, “Listen! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and have dinner with him, and he with Me” (Revelation 3:20 HCSB).