When I purchased my first car in a decade in 2016, I had to adjust to all the items which had become automatic. Instead of an ignition key, I now use a remote starter. I had to learn to program climate control, which has separate and in sync options for the driver and any passengers. I have a menu that notifies me when the tire pressure is low, the oil needs to be changed, or when it’s time for a fill-up. The headlights go on and off automatically. GPS came with the car, as did a free subscription to Sirius XM Radio.
I have purchased one car since and the second adjustment was easier. I only used the car’s GPS until the free subscription ended. I didn’t get a second free trial for Sirius XM, but by then I was already hooked. One of my favorite stations is the ’80s station, the first decade that I really began to celebrate the top 40 songs of the era. Many of the VJs from that era are now DJs on this station. Between songs, they often share what it was like to host shows and be a part of the first days of music videos.
As I was on the road the other day, when I turned on the station, Rick Springfield, another ’80s icon, was guest DJing. He shared a list of the 10 worst songs of the ’80s according to a Rolling Stone readers poll. Many of the songs were number 1 hits at the time. So I was surprised they made the list. I share them with you for your reflection.
I know that time changes our perspective. There are some films I see today that do not resonate with me the same way they did when I saw them the first time. When Harry Met Sally and A Fish Called Wanda are two examples, for me. The same is not true for books. Fantasy classics like the Lord of the Rings series are still the best! Each time I read those books, I discover new threads in the story and the world that Tolkien created.
The same is true of the Bible. I have lost count of the number of times I’ve read this Holy book. Different passages have resonated with me over the years, based on what’s happening in my life and in the world. God’s spirit breathes through each chapter, helping us see ourselves and others through our Creator’s eyes. As I have the opportunity to hear many sermons in my role as District Superintendent, I am able to learn about each pastor’s understanding of Scripture, adding to my own spiritual growth and changing relationship with our Lord.
If I were to rank the 10 passages that resonate best with me or the 10 that I struggle with, I don’t believe that I would choose the same passages today as I did a few decades ago. My life and the world have changed so much since then. The Bible continues to speak to us in awesome and miraculous ways. These are dynamic words, living words, soul-filling, and faith-affirming words. I encourage each of you to discover your favorite and least favorite passages for this week and this year. Think about why you love them and why you may want to skip them. Reflect on who you are and whose you are every day. And Amen.