God Was My Cousin Jimmy

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Tuesday, June 4, 2019 6 comments

by Chad Koons

It was the early 1980’s. Our living room had red carpet, a painted brick wall adorned with a nice picture of Jesus, and one of those giant, woodgrain console Zenith TV’s. In front of Jesus, sitting atop the TV, was something that absolutely blew my mind. It was a treasure that only my family seemed to possess. Nestled inside of a nondescript 5”x7” gold frame existed a truly rare photo of God the Father!

Although, I didn’t know who the guy was at first. The figure in the photo wore a nice suit and peered pleasantly into your soul. You couldn’t watch TV without seeing this dynamic duo: Jesus and the mystery man who sat atop the TV. They kept a silent yet commanding vigil across our living room.

I remember standing in front of the TV and pointing in the direction of the suited enigma’s picture. “Who is that guy?” I’d asked my Mom. “That’s God,” she replied, in a nonchalant tone. “That’s GOD?!” I replied in amazement, “God our FATHER?” I remember Mom looking at me like I was stupid or something. “Well yes, of course it’s God.”

I was probably 5 or 6 years old at the time, so my deductive reasoning was still being developed, but this absolutely did my head in. Something didn’t seem right about it; God didn’t look like He was from ancient times like His Son did. Maybe they had modern suits in heaven? And why did He look strangely familiar? It didn’t make any sense.

Mom, much to her credit, was patient with me. I would repeatedly point towards that photo and demand the guy’s identity. Every time she would answer, “I told you, it’s God.” I remained confused and amazed. I wanted to believe it, but it just didn’t add up. Mom wouldn’t lie to me, right? Not even our church had this thing. They had Jesus all over the place, so why couldn’t they have His Dad, too?! We did.

One day, maybe a year later, I just couldn’t take it anymore. Desperate for answers, I pointed in the direction of the seemingly holy photo and hotly demanded; “Mom, who is that guy, is that really God?” As usual, Mom said yes. That made me upset. I grabbed the photo off of the TV and held it up to her face; “Mom, this guy right here, is this really God the Father?”

She started laughing. “No, honey,” she said. “That is your cousin Jimmy’s graduation picture!” “But you told me it was GOD?!” I shouted back at her. It finally made sense when my Mom explained: “I thought you were pointing behind Jimmy, to the picture of Jesus on the wall!”

For maybe a year, I had the wrong picture of God in my mind.

Every time I had approached the Lord, I found myself under the wrong impression. When I would pray, I’d see my cousin Jimmy’s face. When I’d hear someone talk about the Lord, I’d envision my relative. When we would sing in church, I’d see Jimmy receiving our worship. Imagine how this affected my life!

I was frustrated and helpless. I urgently wanted to know the truth, but I needed someone’s help to get me there.

Look around you. The world surrounding us feels the same way. Our world is full of withering and dying people. Eager to know the truth, they remain burdened by the wrong image of God in their mind. They feel trapped and hopeless. They are ready for understanding, but they need help to get there. They will believe if someone will take the time to listen and explain. Jesus said that the fields are ripe for harvest, and I still believe that.

Yet, how many opportunities have I wasted? Have you ever been so busy that you ignore the call, assuming that someone else will do it for you?

We are the very ambassadors of Christ. God is making His appeal through us.

Someone once said that if we remain silent, then the Lord will raise up someone else to do the job. Dear God, I do not want to be overlooked. My heart aches to fulfill my ambassadorship, to honor His calling.

People are seeking, honestly and truly seeking, because the Father is drawing them to Jesus. This will fulfill the promise that only the seekers will be the ones who will find. But how do they find? They find through us, the ambassadors of Christ. Will you guide them? Will I?

Life is short. Mankind will not be granted unlimited opportunities to come to Jesus. If you won’t tell them, then who will? You will be the answer to someone’s prayer.

I leave you with this. Someone is crying out to God, frustrated with the false image and desperate to find the truth. Maybe God isn’t their cousin Jimmy, but they will have another image in their mind, an image that is powerless to save them, one that they know is not quite right. They are desperate for answers, hoping that God will split the heavens to reveal Himself. They are truly seeking, and the Father is drawing them.

In response, the Lord sends you. You show up in their world, containing the answers that they are so very desperate to receive.

If you choose to walk away from that person, you may walk away with the last ounce of hope that person ever had. Your neglect may serve to seal their fate. It cannot be said strongly enough; the responsibility is ours.

Someone else won’t do it for you. You will. That’s why the Lord put you there.

Take the time. Listen. Speak. I’m not asking you to change the world, I’m asking you to change your world – the people surrounding you. You carry the clear Answer that will set them free.

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Scott said...

Chad, I laughed when you held that picture up to your mom of my brother. As I was reading it reminds me of when mom passed and I just could not understand why. I hated everyone for it. I even doubted if there really is a God because of it. I went down hill very quickly. as the days went on I was wondering why God did not answer my prayers on why he had taken her. then later that week I realized he did not do it to hurt me or the family but to help mom and keep her from being in so much pain and to heal her. something came over me and I believe it was help from mom and God telling me that everything will be ok and for me to keep going and do not give up which I surely was doing. then when pop left us it was a little easier because I knew pop was having troubles and everyday they just kept getting worse of course he never gave up and did what he had to. I miss them both very much and to let you know your words help me a lot. thank you. Love ya brother.

Jim said...

Hey Chad , first off I wanna thank you for sharing your story ! I know you told me that you once thought that I was God but I really couldn’t grasp the full meaning of what you had told me until now ! I could see your frustration not being able to put it all together, wondering why I was in a Suit and tie and Jesus was in robes and garments of that period . Truthfully we don’t have a clue unless like you said someone steps up and takes us by the hand and shows or points us in the right direction, there are a lot of false idols in the world , but God is the one true light, uncover your light and let it shine bright!!!

Glenda said...

This article is both comical and enlightening. I truly enjoyed every aspect of it. I will admit that I laughed out loud when reading the unveiling discovery of true identity of God/your cousin Jimmy. The message within this story is not only Biblical but also very inspiring. Thank you for sharing this and for reminding us of the importance of owning up to our responsibilities as ambassadors of Christ! Inspired to take control and touch the lives surrounding my world!

Unknown said...

Chad, as usual you are right on point. We are His ambassador here on planet earth. The world's image has skewed who God truly is. Tag we are it. We should have an expectation daily to reach out and share Christ.

Jason said...

This is a hilarious story but only because it has a happy ending. You eventually found out the truth about who the Father really was. like you said, it is our responsibility to help bring people to this truth. Many people don't have a happy ending. It's up to us to go out into the harvest and save the lost!

Debby Hiester said...

Thank you, Chad, for your engaging and vivid humor that captured my attention with lightning speed. And thank you, even moreso, for the not-so-gentle swift kick in the posterior, reminding me to not only recall my responsibility to spread the Gospel, but to act on it. Blessings to you.