I watched Stand By Me for the first time this week (appropriate considering the story happens over Labor Day weekend). I actually didn’t know anything about it before I watched it, just that it was really famous. It’s one of those movies that I can’t recommend, but I kind of liked it. Enough to go to the library to look for The Body by Stephen King, anyway. Future posts on that.
At the end of the movie, grown-up Gordy says something like, “No one has friends like they did when they were twelve.” I got to thinking about it. Twelve is about when you get extremely aware of what people think of you, and most people never really stop caring what people think of them. When you care what people think of you, you change. Reputation might be the single most powerful force driving the choices we make.
I realized recently that I care very deeply what people think of me. I’m not a secretive person, but I’m not open either. I haven’t murdered anyone, but maybe I’ve struggled with something unlikely, and I don’t want you to know. So … I have this friend. He can see you exactly the same way no matter what you tell him. And even though this wasn’t someone I wanted to impress, necessarily, I didn’t want to look bad either. But he wasn’t kidding. There was no change when he found out. No judgment, no knowing looks. And it was so freeing to be with someone that I couldn’t impress, because I couldn’t disappoint him either. I’m going to miss him.
And then I realized that that’s what God is like. God knows everything about you, but He still loves you. Even if you hate your boss, or cheat on your taxes, or pirate music, God still loves you. No matter what you do, you can’t disappoint God, because he already saw it coming, and he already paid for it to be made right. Because of what Jesus has done for me on the cross, I am free.