Sean and Renee just got home from church. As Sean was setting the table for supper, Renee thought about the morning’s sermon and remarked, “Wouldn’t it have been cool to live in the days of Daniel? Or Moses, even? Imagine seeing God work His miracles in person!”
“You mean being taken from your home as a prince and then dragged as a slave to a pagan land where everyone hates you?” responded Sean.
Sean ducked to avoid the carrots thrown by Renee. “You know what I mean. Imagine standing in a lion’s den with an angel from God standing there with you keeping the lions from eating you. Or being with Moses as he stood at the edge of the Red Sea as it pulls apart and the whole nation of Israel walks on dry land. Man, I can’t wait to get to heaven to ask them what it was like.”
Sean thought to himself for awhile as Renee put plates down on the table. But after they prayed over their meal, he could not bring himself to eat yet. He just kept thinking about what Renee had said. “How do you think the conversation would go?”
“What do you mean?”
“Well,” Sean began. “There we are sitting across the table from David, Daniel, Moses and Elijah in heaven and you say what?”
“Kay. Sure. Hey David, what was it like to stand in front of a giant knowing that you were going to lop his head off and no one else believed you could do it?”
“I’ll pretend to be David,” Sean says. “Thanks for asking Renee. It was cool. But tell me something. What was it like to have the Holy Spirit living in you every day, keeping you strong when you thought you couldn’t go on?”
“I mean, I saw God work a few miracles here and there but you got to see His Spirit work in you all the time. What was that like?”
“Well, uh, you know.” Renee was a bit flustered but didn’t want Sean to win this game. “I think I’ll talk with Daniel if you don’t mind. Hey Danny, tell what was like to have those crazy dreams about the future and to speak with angels about it?”
Sean was up to the challenge. “In a word: freaky. But tell me, with the Holy Spirit of God living in you, what was it like when He spoke to you? What was it like to understand the Bible as you read it as He guided you through His word every time you picked it up?”
“OK Dan. Are you telling me you didn’t understand what God was telling you when He gave you those dreams?”
“Not always. And even when He sent Michael to help me understand I had trouble sleeping at night.”
Renee wanted to interview someone else. These conversations just weren’t going the way she thought they would.
“Hey, I’ll see what Moses and Elijah have to say. So Elijah, it must have been pretty amazing calling down fire from heaven showing up those prophets of Baal. And what about raising that kid from the dead? You saw God do some pretty cool stuff.”
“Well, you know. Fire from heaven was pretty hot. And you know that boy raised from the dead? He died again. But tell me what it was like on earth for you having the Holy Spirit burn within your heart? Or what was it like when you felt depressed and He was there to help you get over it? What was it like to have God live within you?”
Renee had one more shot. “Hey Moses. Tell me what it was like to see and follow that cloud by day and fire by night. Tell me about meeting God on the mountain and hearing His voice boom as He spoke directly to you. What was it like to see the greatest nation on earth fall at your hands so you can lead God’s people out of Egypt?”
Sean thought about it for awhile. “Tell me, Renee. I had to climb that mountain to speak with God or go into the Tent of Meeting to meet with Him. Tell me what it was like to have the Holy Spirit in you, speaking to you whenever you wanted Him to, to hear His voice telling you which direction to go when you hadn’t a clue? To have Him help you triumph over the enemies in your life on a daily basis?”
“OK Sean. What is your point?”
Sean picked up his Bible and turned to Romans 8. “I was reading this the other day. Romans 8:11 says, ‘But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.’ Those Old Testament saints saw some pretty amazing stuff but they didn’t have what we have, the Holy Spirit. They didn’t have the gifts of the Holy Spirit. They didn’t have imparted to them spiritual gifts from God.”
“So what you’re saying is that any conversation I start in heaven will turn around on me so what I think was impressive will pale in comparison to what those Old Testament saints think was impressive?”
“Well, more to the point, your life is more full then you think. What we read in Bible stories is a once in a lifetime experience. But in reality, we can have lifetime experiences every day. Perhaps those experiences won’t make it in the front pages of the newspaper but they are just as impressive and exciting to God as we think those Bible stories are.”
Renee waited a beat before responding.
“So when did you get to be so smart?”
“About the same time you learned how to cook.”
Currently on disability, Brian has been a pastor since graduating from San Diego Christian College in 1986 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Biblical Studies. In 1994, Brian earned a graduate level paralegal degree from the University of San Diego. Since 1984, he has been very active in the AWANA clubs serving as a commander, pastor and missionary advisory board member. Brian has worked on pastoral staffs of churches in Colorado and southern California. In 1997 he began a church in his home which currently meets in its own building located in Desert Hot Springs, California. A major hobby of Brian’s is cycling which includes two bike trips through Europe and a Canada to Mexico ride. Brian has been married to Beth, who he met in college, for over 26 years and they currently live in the Palm Springs area. They have two grown children.