In these days He went out to the mountain to pray, and all night He continued in prayer to God. And when day came, He called His disciples and chose from them twelve, whom He named apostles: Simon, whom He named Peter, and Andrew His brother, and James and John, and Philip, and Bartholomew, and Matthew, and Thomas, and James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon who was called the Zealot, and Judas the son of James, and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor. Luke 6:12-16
One of the things that I find most frustrating is how little we know about the people of the Bible. I mean, we are told stories, but what did they really think? Did Moses worry about hurting the feelings of Pharaoh’s daughter? What did it feel like to be Samuel when his mother dropped him off at the Temple? I wonder what Peter’s wife thought when he gave up fishing and followed Jesus? What did John think when Jesus gave him His mother from the Cross? Huge blanks exist in the Scriptures.
Church history tells bits and pieces of the apostles’ stories, where they ministered and the like. But did they argue with their wives? Which one of them had a wild child? Because you know there’s always a wild child among preachers’ offspring… What we know about these men about whom we speak so familiarly is actually shockingly little.
The Bible is not our story, which is what we sometimes hear. To the contrary, the Bible is the story of God. After all, in the beginning and the end, before time and through eternity, there is God – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. You and I? We’re just a blip on the screen of history, but God is from everlasting to everlasting. Just as the Bible is His story, so also is today God’s story. Oh, we think it’s all about us, but it’s really not. Did you notice in the passage that Jesus prayed all night, then called His apostles? There were others there, unnamed folks we do not know. They were disciples, too. I wonder if any of them balked? The Bible doesn’t say. I’m pretty sure I would have wanted to know where we were going, how long we would be gone, where we would be staying, who was paying, and on and on. What they thought and felt wasn’t important enough to record. Maybe what is important in life is that God knows our name, not that anyone else does. Certainly, the most important choice is whether our story is about us or about God. What Scripture doesn’t say reveals that life and living are not really all about us. Makes me wonder… each day, do we live for ourselves or do we get caught up in God’s story?
Rev. Elizabeth Moreau