Today’s quote comes from Ben Beamering reading the newspaper out loud to Jonathan where Seth Wilson, the mayor of Pasadena, explains why he rode in a 1958 Edsel in the 1959 Tournament of Roses Parade:
“‘Mr. Milner seems to favor either a new car or a classic car as worthy of this parade. To that I wish to say that I believe the 1958 Edsel will, in time, be recognized as the American classic that it truly is.’
“Ben read that last sentence in reverent tones.”
The Edsel was a classic all right. So classic that it disappeared the next year and never came back. One of the 1958 ad lines was “The EDSEL LOOK is here to stay — and 1959 cars will prove it.” Meaning that all the 1959 cars will want to look like Edsels, when in fact not even the 1959 Edsel looked like an Edsel. Which in that sense would make the ‘58 a classic, in that no car before or since has come close. And that is true.
No wonder Ben loves and hates this car. He loves it because it’s unique, quirky, and unpopular, like him; he hates it because of its short lifespan, also like him. But what this teaches each one of us is that we too are unique, and we each have a place in the heart of God where He values who He made us to be. God loves you and made you uniquely you. There is no other you. You are it. You are you. God not only loves you, He delights in you. You bring Him pleasure just as the story of Ben Beamering is bringing us pleasure.
Ben is an unorthodox instrument of God, and so are you. Come on, let’s face it, we all are a little unorthodox. There’s something a little quirky about each of us. There is something true and serious and laughable that makes you you. So what does it do for us, to know this? It should give you courage to fulfill your calling, to discover your potential, to be who you are in the process of accomplishing what you are supposed to do.
“This was Ben’s own revelation. His odd shape, the horse-collar grille of his mouth, his sunken cheeks, the taillights of his ears curved inward, the gears of his mind that shifted from buttons in the steering column of his inner direction, the engine that ran with a fatal flaw, doomed from the start — this was all a part of the shape of Ben, and this was all loved by God and given a purpose on earth and in heaven. Ben was official.” (p. 277)
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