In my second year as a newspaper reporter in Athens, GA, I was given my most daunting assignment. Rumor had it that the President of the University was about to resign. I was sent to his office to get the scoop. I can still remember the secretary opening the enormous oak door to let me into his office. I can still remember the atmosphere of majesty as I entered the room, shook his hand, and timidly began the interview.
Within a year I was in another president’s office. It was the Office of Dr. Sam Patterson, the first president of RTS. I was seeking admission, and he (and others) wanted to see if I was the real deal. Did I really belong in seminary?
One of those interviews has receded in my memory, the other has not. One interview bore the majesty of an old and great university. The other bore the majesty of a great and faithful Savior.
Dr. Patterson greeted the sun every morning on his knees. His countenance radiated the face of Christ. His words and tone of voice echoed the compassion and conviction of the gospel. Sam Patterson died a few years ago with less than $100 in his checking account. He had given the rest away. What I would give for another conversation with Sam Patterson!
And then, this week, I opened my Bible again to Psalm 19, and was reminded that neither of those other conversations compare with a conversation each of us has every day, a conversation that, if we listen, fills us with the same kind of majesty and joy that I once saw in Sam Patterson.**
Every day, God initiates a conversation with you. Did you notice? Do you hear?
There are five “Wows!” that a conversation with God produces — according to Psalm 19:
1. The Wow! of what God has made. Slow down and savor it!
2. The Wow! of the God who made all this. Honor Him and give thanks!
3. The Wow! of the Word of God. Let it in. It will lead you to Christ!
4. The Wow! of Christ. The eternal Word of God came and was planted in our humanity, so that we, in our humanity, could be planted with the eternal Word of God. Read 1 Peter 1: 23-25.
5. The Wow! of Christ’s work in your life. The wonder of God’s works and word grows. He guides you by imparting His ultimate values in you; He leads you to repentance and forgiveness; He leads you to holiness. And you join the heaven to “declare the glory of God”.
**For a taste of Sam Patterson’s preaching read his sermon “Something Good has Happened to Death” at: http://www.rts.edu/Site/Resources/Booklets/RTSSomeGoodbkltweb.pdf