Your Daddy Must Be CRAZY
by Rev. Randy Brown
The strength of man doesn’t compare with even the weakness of God. What is the strangest thing, the craziest thing that you’ve ever known a father to do? We look at God’s word and we see where God is always doing some crazy things. Look at the sixth chapter of the book of Joshua. You remember the story. There’s the battle of Jericho and the battle plan was set. The battle plan was to march around the city once a day for seven days, and on the seventh day, blow the trumpet; and the walls are going to fall down. What general in their right mind would buy into that? That’s what God said do, and so they did it. They marched around. They blew the trumpet, and the walls fell. God, our Father, does some crazy kinds of stuff.
Or, ask Jonah. Jonah was told to go to Nineveh, and Jonah didn’t want to go to Nineveh. So, as he’s running, he runs to the ship and he gets on the ship. Suddenly, he realizes he’s got to get off the ship or everybody is going to die. So, God sends along a big fish that swallows Jonah up. After three days, the fish gets indigestion and spews him out on the shore, and Jonah goes to Nineveh and does what God told him to do.
Now, I don’t want you think that it’s just dads that do crazy stuff. So, ladies, in equal time, there was that boy by the name of Moses and his mama put him in a basket and set him over there at the edge of the water. Crazy stuff.
We all do crazy stuff. God does crazy stuff, and He calls us to do crazy stuff in our lives. It is in God’s wisdom that He does that. We think it’s foolish. We don’t understand His plan, but it is in the wisdom of God that He does all of this crazy stuff. God calls us to do what the world would say is foolish, that the world may see their weakness, and may see the strength of God.
I asked you a few moments ago what was the craziest thing you’ve ever witnessed and experienced. Paul says it like this, “That God would do some foolish things.” And, what foolishness that the world could not understand was actually in the wisdom of God. They’d been looking for a long time for a Messiah, for a ruler, for a promised Savior, an earthly king with armies like all the other earthly kings, but he would be one that no one could match: A king more powerful than all the others. He would slay his enemies and crush his opponents, and punish his adversaries, and annihilate anyone who would come to threaten him. That’s not how God chose to come. That’s not how God chose to send the Messiah. He sends the Messiah, not in military might, but in a baby. I told you our daddy was crazy. He sends the Savior in the form of a baby. He does that because He loves us, and He has a crazy love for you and for me. His love defies logic, common sense, and conventional wisdom.
God goes to extreme measures to enter into a relationship with us. The Scripture we read in Ephesians says that Jesus was there with God, but he emptied Himself of the fullness of God. John’s Gospel says it like this, we read it a few moments ago, “And the Word was God, and the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.” “God put on skin and moved into the neighborhood”, as one translation has it.
Crazy, isn’t it? That God, the Creator of the universe, would come to us in the form of a baby. It defies logic, but that’s our crazy Heavenly Father. He does things like that. He is so totally unpredictable but He is so absolutely dependable. Our crazy daddy! “The Word became flesh and dwelt among us.”
Years ago, there was a missionary returning from the mission field for their career. They were coming back, and there was kind of a debriefing time. And Bishop Goodson was in the audience with this missionary; Bishop Goodson asked him to tell his story. And he had never told his story before, so at the request of Bishop Goodson, this missionary begins to tell his story.
He said he was educated in the finest universities in America, had all the degrees and graduated at the top of his class, and all those things. He would go to…He felt called to the mission field. And as they were called to the mission field, they arrived in Africa. As they arrived there, they were greeted by the dignitaries of that country, and they were told, “We’re going to take you straight to the hospitals and you begin your work there. “
The doctor and missionary said, “No, that’s not where God wants us to go. God wants us to go out into the wilderness. God wants us to go where there’s no medical facility; to care for people who wouldn’t have medical care otherwise.” The dignitaries and the heads of government couldn’t understand that, but yet they took them to a place just like what they had asked for.
The missionary said, “Well, it didn’t go very well for a long time, a couple years.”He said, “But then, I began to make a difference and I began to reach people.”
The Bishop said, “Well, how did that happen?”
He said, “Well, our first son was born. As our first son was born, he was about a year or two old now, and he came down with a disease, with a sickness, very sick, very critically ill.” He said, “I promised my boy that he wouldn’t die because I was from the best-educated universities back in the states and I knew all there was to know, and I would not let anything happen to him.”
The missionary said, “Try as I might, nothing I tried worked.” He said, “One day, my son died.
He said, “And I built a coffin for him, just big enough for his two-to-three-year-old body to go into, and I left the hut with the coffin in my arms and a shovel on top of that. I walked out into the streets of the village and one of the locals said, “What are you doing, what do you have there?””
He said, “I told him that my son had died and I was going into the hillside to bury him.”
He said, “As I walked to the hillside, this local villager followed. He followed me from a distance, and he followed me, and he watched me as I dug the grave. He watched me as I lowered the casket down into the ground. He watched me as I shoveled the dirt back on top of my son’s grave. He watched me as I laid on top of that grave and wept.”
He said, “Then he turned and he ran back to the village. He went into the village yelling and screaming, ‘White man cries just like we do.’ “
He said, “From that moment on, I began to have a ministry, I began to make a difference.” He said, “But, Bishop, it cost me my son to reach the people of that village.”
The Bishop said, “That’s just like God because it cost God His Son to reach us.”
That’s the crazy love that God has for you and for me.
He came in the form of a baby. He came, not through royal blood lines, He came through common people and common places. We’re going to find God in the ordinary before we find Him in the extraordinary.
I mentioned his family tree a moment ago. Read the first chapter of the Gospel of Matthew. You talk about a dysfunctional family tree! Jesus had one. In that family tree you’ll see Abraham; he was a liar. You’ll see David; he committed murder and adultery. You’ll see Rahab; she was a prostitute. You’ll see Ruth; she was a foreigner. You think your family tree is messed up, just read there in the first chapter of the Gospel of Matthew.
They had longed for a Messiah. And God brought one through a strange family tree, and He placed that little baby in a backward town named Bethlehem at the busiest time of the year; tax season. And, He came to an engaged couple; in the midst of making wedding plans an angel appeared to Mary. Mary frets and travels to kinfolk. And she sees Joseph and tells him this wild and crazy tale that the baby was on the way.
Now, if He had come as a full-grown man, we might have bought into that. If He had come as a disembodied voice, we might have heard that. But, no, He came as a baby! Helpless. Messy. I was in labor and delivery when both our girls were born. It’s messy, okay? There’s blood, and sweat, and mucus, and screaming; and that’s just from the daddy. It’s messy. It’s yucky. It’s unsanitary. But that’s where God showed up. God showed up right in the middle of that mess.
He showed up with a peasant girl in a backward town. The first visitors that came, they weren’t dignitaries, they weren’t heads of state; they were stinkin’ shepherds! Not who you’d say you wanted to come see your first born, nothing noble about it. There were shepherds in the field, ridiculed by society. All of a sudden there was a baby. Like most babies do, they turn your world upside down. Amen? Amen. Okay.
When the shepherds got there, they found Him not in satin sheets but in ragged cloths. Not with a golden rattle or a silver spoon in his mouth, but lying there in a feeding trough with the livestock.
You know, our daddy does some crazy stuff. In the midst of stinking animals, messy situations and messy people, God shows up. You know why that is? Because there’s a mess in my life, and there’s probably a mess in your life. And God shows up in the middle of our messes. That’s where He shows up. Your mess does not make you off-limits to God. Our world is in a mess. Our country is in a mess. Our community is in a mess. Our lives may be in a mess, but God is not afraid of the messy things. He wants to come and meet us right where we are.
The Scripture says, “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.” Mess and all. Have you messed up? Try as we might to put it all back together again, Humpty Dumpty’s still broken. But, out of the craziness and the love of God, He comes to us right in the middle of that. He’s not afraid of our mess. He won’t run from your mess. He wants to show up and be there with His presence for you.
He didn’t come for those who had it all together. He didn’t come for the well; He came for the sick. He didn’t come for the sterile; He came for the infected. He comes in the middle of my mess and your mess. Crazy, isn’t it? But that’s what He does.
His life was a mess. His world was a mess. He died for a messy world. The world says it’s foolish, but the Scripture says it’s true. From the first day he was here to the last day he was here, he was around all kinds of messy people.
I don’t know, ladies…I don’t know how many of you used to tell your children this, “Cleanliness is next to Godliness.” That’s not in the Book. If it was, Jesus would have never come. Cleanliness is not necessarily next to Godliness, but Godliness shows up in the messiness of life.
That’s our crazy daddy for you. Crazy that He shows up, and aren’t you glad He is? Crazy. A baby, who became a boy, who became a man: who has always existed.
“And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.” Crazy. You can’t make this stuff up. It’s crazy, but crazy enough to be absolutely true; that the Word became flesh and moved into a messy world. Now, that’s what the Book says, and the Book never lies.
Let us pray
Father, we thank you. Lord, sometimes we think we’ve pushed the right buttons and entered the right numbers and we’ve got you all figured out. Then, you show up in a baby and it blows our mind. Lord, thank you for your unpredictable, dependable, reliable love for us. Thank you, Lord. We’ll celebrate it, and we’ll share it. Amen.