20 June, 2024

The Good Stuff

by | 18 March, 2024 | 0 comments

By Doug Redford 

During the height of his remarkable career, Walt Disney employed a staff of animators who would work during the day at their drawing tables trying to sketch out new ideas for cartoon or movie characters. (Keep in mind that this was some time before computers and digital technology came along.) 

Disney would never go in during the daytime to see what the animators were doing; he didn’t want them to feel like he was shadowing them. But at night when they had all gone home, Disney would go in and look around the room.  

Occasionally the animators would leave a project they had begun on the drawing table, and Disney would examine it. When the animators went back to work the next day, sometimes they would see that Disney had taken a crumpled-up piece of paper out of the trash can, smoothed it out, and placed it on the drawing table with the handwritten note, “Quit throwing the good stuff away.” 

The night Jesus observed the Passover with his disciples and established the new memorial of Communion, some “good stuff” was in the process of happening, though it didn’t seem so at the time.  

Jesus told the disciples as he passed the bread to them, “This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me.” And then he passed the cup and told them, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this . . . in remembrance of me” (1 Corinthians 11:24-25). Many thought that when Jesus died, the good stuff (his life, his message, his impact) was being thrown away. But no; he knew full well what was happening. His life was not being thrown away; he gave his life (John 10:17-18) to provide all the “good stuff” that came as a result: forgiveness, peace with God, and eternal life to name a few. We remember that good stuff at Communion.  

We should also remember the good stuff that comes to us between Sundays, through all that God in his providence and mercy brings to us to encourage us in our daily journey. Jesus taught us to pray in what we call the Lord’s Prayer, “Give us today our daily bread” (Matthew 6:11), which perhaps we could reword to say, “Give us the good stuff we need, and help us to keep our eyes and ears and hearts open to it.” 

Doug Redford has served in the preaching ministry, as an editor of adult Sunday school curriculum, and as a Bible college professor. Now retired, he continues to write and speak as opportunities come. 

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