Do you know Johnny Lechner? Do you even know anyone like Johnny Lechner?
Johnny Lechner enrolled as a freshman at the University of Wisconsin in Whitewater when he was 18. Although some students are able to squeeze a 4-year degree into five or six years, Johnny Lechner took 15.
He was actually a pretty good student – 3.0 grade point average, basically a B. But he ended up with three majors and three minors. The school – the dean, the registrar, his friends – kept urging him to graduate, but he kept enrolling for more classwork. He worked a lot on the side to pay for it, and partied a lot to help him deal with the boredom of an interminable decade and a half of lectures, term papers, and exams.
It’s no surprise that a lot of people wanted to know why, well into his 30’s, Johnny was still an undergrad. A job counselor once told him, “You need to get focused on your future.” His typical response was, “But I like college. It’s become a career for me. I wake up every day and I’m happy. I’m very confused about what I want to do, but right now I’m living in my comfort zone.”
The take-aways for a Christian are glaring. I’m not going to ask you if you know any Johnny Lechners in your church (or if you worship in a church full of Johnny Lechners) I’m asking you to ask yourself if you are one. Comfortable. Content. Not focused on the future. Content to wake up every morning and head out for the day as long as you’re happy. A comfort zone can be a pleasant place but not much grows there.
Or do you roll out of bed eager to see what God has in mind for your day? You are certain He brought you to this point, crowned you with an honored place in His family, gifted you to help Him change His world, commissioned you to help change the population of eternity. You’re not at all confused about what you want to do, and you’re eager to get on with it. Your prayer is, “God, I can hardly wait to see who You’re going to bring me today that I can bless.” You’re not just thinking about your future, you’re also invested in the future of your colleagues at work, your neighbors, your family, the clerk at the market, some folks you don’t even like.
Jesus has already taken the finals for you. Your diploma is signed with His blood. So you ask, “Okay, Lord, what’s the next brazen step you want me to take as I venture out into your world?”
By Don Jacobsen