May 19, 2009
And they were astonished beyond measure, saying, "He has done all things well. He even makes the deaf hear and the mute speak." Mark 7:37
I'm glad Willa Chen wasn't in any classes with me.
Willa Chen is what we used to call "a curve wrecker." A curve wrecker is a person who does well when the rest of the class crashes and burns. Willa is a curve wrecker.
Recently, The Detroit News reported that 17-year-old Willa had managed to get a perfect score on the ACT -- and the SAT -- and the PSAT. For those of you without teens, those are the tests most students take before they apply to college.
The odds on a student scoring perfectly on all three tests are about as good as the chance of water running uphill. It doesn't happen. It can't happen. Even so, Willa did it.
I started to check Willa out. It wasn't hard to do. She's all over the place. Willa was also crowned as the Plymouth-Canton Junior Miss for 2009. Willa received scholarships in the categories of Physical Fitness, Self-Expression, Talent, Interview, and -- no surprise - Scholastics.
Soon, I began to wonder, is there anything Willa Chen can't do?
The answer to that question is, "Yes." Willa is spectacular, no doubt about it. But Willa's not perfect. She's a sinner, and she can't save herself from those sins. Neither can you or me. We are lost. We have failed God's test of perfection.
If we are to be saved, it will only be through Jesus. Only Jesus lived His life perfectly without sinning. Only Jesus resisted Satan completely without faltering. Only Jesus carried every one of our sins. He is our Redeemer. His rising from the dead on the third day says, "Christ alone is perfect."
This is why today we join with the crowd of Mark's text and say, "He has done all things well. He even makes the deaf hear and the mute speak." And, praise God, He saves sinners, too.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, as I look at my life I see every day is filled with flaws, faults, and failures. We all know I am far from perfect; this is why I need You. You have passed the tests that humanity has failed. You have succeeded where we were unsuccessful. For my salvation, thanks and praise. In Your Name. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries