Saturday, March 7, 2020

Chevy vs. Ford

We all have a plethora of opinions that we hold to…there may be differences, however, in the way that some people choose to share…or not share these opinions.  Often our opinions and beliefs are rock solid…unchanging…etched in stone, like the Est. 1890 cornerstone on the historic courthouse in Little Falls, MN, that may or may not exist.  Let’s be honest…how many of us are actually swayed by political debates?  Most of us have already chosen our favorites…then we just sit on our sofas, eating nachos, while rooting for our debater to score a touchdown.  Are we swayed by the arguments of others?...Doubtful. 

As I was growing up through Jr. High and High School, I was adamant that there was only one automobile manufacturer worth their salt.  General Motors. The rationale was simple…two reasons. 1. Chevrolet’s wide ability of interchangeable parts.  You could take an engine from a 1968 Camaro and drop it into a 1978 Silverado.  Everything fit…without the temptation of excessive creative language. (Truth be told…Ford was probably the same…but I insisted that they were not). 2. General Motors is what my dad drove and swore by…thus by default…I was also adamantly loyal to General Motors.

In college, I would often spend my time helping people out with car problems that they were experiencing in the campus parking lot.  I replaced alternators, starters, radiator hoses, thermostats, changed oil, shocks, head gaskets, mufflers, oxygen sensors…and many more I do not even recall.  On one such occasion my bald headed friend Geno called and gave me an offer that I could not refuse.  “My Ford Ranger won’t start…I want you to fix it or I will remove your eyeballs.” Geno was on the football team.

“Geno…I already know the problem!”

“Really!? What’s that?”

“It’s a Ford…”… “No! No! Geno…put down the spoon…I was only kidding…I will fix it…I don’t mind…it’s only -30°F…it’s not like it -40°.”

I braved the snow and cold and began to work on Geno’s Ford Ranger.  It was the starter.  I already had a predisposed disgust of Fords and my frozen fingers were not aiding in building any affinity. I banged my head 3 or more times on the frame of the Ranger and Geno’s truck likely still has some of my frozen knuckle flesh left stuck to the bell housing. I finished the job and went back to my dorm room to thaw. The next morning, when I woke, I could not move my neck…like at all. I went to the doctor so that he could tell me that I was dying of Menegitis…instead he said it might be cancer.  “Go home and take this Vicodin…and if you are alive in 24 hours you will be ok.” 

It was neither of those illnesses.  I am convinced that it was the curse of the Ford.

Fast forward 4 years.  I married a beautiful girl from the Detroit area whose dad was a Ford Engineer for 30+ years.  This was an interesting twist in my life.  One of the first things I did after we were married was went out and bought a Ford Ranger.  What can I say…I had a change of heart…I was converted.

In Acts 9:1-19, we find perhaps the most incredible conversion recorded in the history of mankind.  Here we find a man, Saul, who was actively involved in the destruction of the church and the Christians that were following Christ that were establishing it.  Saul was involved in the plans to destroy the followers of Christ…to the point of murdering them. This is perhaps the greatest enemy of God, who is fully converted into the fold.  Saul…the arrestor of Christians…becomes himself…arrested…by the incredible grace from the very one he is persecuting…Jesus Christ.

I, in no way, deserve the grace of Jesus…yet, I have been arrested by it.  I have been captured by it.  I need his grace more than any of you…more than all of you…combined…AND yet, you also, need his grace more than anyone else. I hope you see…that we ALL need his grace…we all need to be arrested…we all need to be converted by His grace.  Ford or Chevy no longer makes any difference to me…but Jesus Christ does.

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