We were usually with a small church all those years ago, with a limited budget, and our own was even more limited. What did I do with all that paper and cardstock? The computer paper graced the walls of many a Bible class. You want to know how tall Goliath was? Unroll a ten foot long length of it, tear it off along the perforations and then measure out Goliath’s six cubits and a span on it and tack it to the wall. In a high ceiling-ed room it was easy, but in others Goliath had to bend over, with the paper running up the wall then along the ceiling. Suddenly you really understood what a “giant” was. It wasn’t just the height. It was how massive his body must have been to support that height.
You want to know how tall Saul was? The scriptures say he was “from his shoulders upward” taller than any of the men of Israel. So we asked tallest man in the church to come in and stand by our computer paper. We marked his height, then went up as much more as his head and shoulders. Saul was no Lilliputian himself. Those lengths of paper also made great time lines. Other times they were “missionary journeys,” an attendance chart for each student, each one measured out according to scale and then “journeyed” with a felt pen to the next stop each time a student came to class. If he didn’t make it back to Antioch or Jerusalem by the time we finished the lesson book it was a sure sign he had missed too many classes!
And the card stock? I must have cut out thousands of flash cards for memory verses, apostles, judges, and prophets, anything that could be represented with a line drawing and a stick man, as well as the question cards for board games I made and Bible Jeopardy boards I constructed. The trash that no one else wanted found a spiritual use that helped hundreds of children learn about God and His word.
God has a habit of taking things that no one else wants and making use of them too. For behold your calling brethren, that not many wise after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble are called…1 Cor 1:26. Jesus did not go to the “in crowd;” he did not go to the rich and powerful. In fact, most of the time those people became his followers it was because they came seeking Him, not the other way around. No, Jesus went to the poor, the disenfranchised, and those whose lives were filled with problems that filled others with disgust. Fishermen may not have been the dregs of society, but they were the working class poor. Matthew the publican was despised. Simon the Zealot was a fanatic from whom others might have shied away. Zacchaeus, though wealthy, was another despised tax collector. Mary Magdalene had had seven demons. He healed ten lepers and the only one of that shunned group that even came back to thank him was a Samaritan, the lowest of the low.
Why did these people flock to Him so? Because He gave them hope. He gave them purpose. He made something of them when everyone else had given up on them. And He will do the same for you and for me. It matters not how far you have fallen, nor how little anyone else values you. God valued you enough to give His son for you. He can pull you out of the world’s trash can and make you a vessel of honor, sanctified, meet for the Master’s use, 2 Tim 2:21. If you think otherwise then you don’t really believe in the Almighty God.
Thus says the Lord, Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches, but let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the Lord who practices steadfast love, justice and righteousness in the earth. For in these things I delight, declares the Lord, Jer 9:23,24.