August 18, 2012
He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter replied, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Matthew 16:15-16
In 1946, Dr. Percy Spencer was an engineer with the Raytheon Corporation.
At the time of this story, Spencer was looking at a new vacuum tube, the "magnetron, "and ways that tube could improve government radar. That's what he was looking for… what he found was a candy bar which melted in his pocket. Thinking the magnetron might have caused the mess, Spencer put some popcorn kernels close to the machine. They popped and shot all over his lab.
The next day, with another scientist recruited to witness what was happening; Spencer put an egg near the tube. The egg rocked and it rolled and the other scientist moved in for a closer look. He was rewarded with a front row seat of an exploding egg.
No dummy, Spencer forgot radar and explored this new method of cooking. Hot dogs were especially fascinating as they went from cold to cooked in a few seconds. He called the frankfurters: "the Speedie Weenie."
It was Serendipitous. Spencer had been looking for one thing and found something better. That's serendipity and serendipity is what we're talking about this month in our Weekender devotions.
You know, over the centuries many people have spiritually traveled to the Bethlehem manger, to Calvary's cross, to Jesus' borrowed and empty tomb.
They thought they were looking for a brilliant Teacher, an enlightened Philosopher, a great Leader, a remarkable Physician. Some of those folks even thought they might find a Charlatan, a Conman, a Fake.
If they looked carefully, these folks were given a vision, a faith in Someone who was infinitely better than their original expectations.
Replacing all their preconceptions, they were offered a Savior. They were shown God's Son, the Redeemer of the world, the Christ who offered His life so humanity might be forgiven and might be given eternal life.
That's what Peter was saying when he made his serendipity statement about Jesus being the Son of God, the Christ, the Savior of the world. By the Holy Spirit's power, the fisherman understood that Jesus was more than a prophet or John the Baptist returned from the grave. Jesus was God's Son, the Bread of Life.
Dr. Percy Spencer, the fellow who accidentally discovered the microwave and a new way of cooking, would understand that part about Jesus being "The Bread of Life." I pray the same understanding and faith will be given to the rest of the world.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, there are many people who think they have You figured out. It is a sadness that all too often their preconceptions get in the way of the truth. May they be brought to a saving faith which allows them to recognize in You, and You alone, is salvation. You are the Christ, the Son of the living God. I ask this in Your Name. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries