What Is “Normal”?

heart surgeryA couple years ago, our daughter had heart surgery. We didn’t even know there was a problem until she passed out. We were sitting in a restaurant in a very remote area in another country. One second Amy was talking to her mom, and the next second she slumped over in her chair, out cold. I picked her up and carried her outside, praying all the way. After a couple hours she was pretty much back to normal, but she sure gave us a scare. There wasn‘t a hospital anywhere even close to us.

Amy had passed out a couple other times several years prior. Doctors could never find a problem so we just let it go. This was a biggie, though, and it caused us great concern. So lots of tests ensued, including Amy wearing a heart monitor for a month. She loved that … or not.

The physicians did, however, determine that she has an arrhythmia. Her heart just starts to race. No apparent reason. It just takes off. The heart monitor revealed at least one episode during that month where Amy’s heart rate was near 200 beats per minute. She wasn’t doing anything to cause it. No running or heavy lifting. Something just clicks and the heart goes wild.

As we discussed it, Amy told us that she has this happen often. In fact, it’s been happening as far back as she can remember.

“So, why did you never tell us?” we asked her.

“Why would I?” she responded. “I just thought it was normal.”

That’s when the light went on in my mind. She has never known anything different. She had no idea that everyone else didn’t experience the same thing. She had no reason to realize that these racing-heart episodes were not something that everybody encountered. For Amy, it was normal.

In much the same way, I think all of us live in a subpar manner most of the time. Sin has marred our existence here on Earth. Nowhere is this more evident than in the arena of worship. What we call worship falls so far short of the heavenly pattern, that I have to wonder whether we even understand a small inkling of true worship. But for us, what we have experienced is normal. Just like Amy’s racing heart, it’s all we’ve ever known. Maybe, just maybe, there’s something more, something different, something closer to the worship in Heaven.

(Excerpted from Worship In Heaven … and Why On Earth It Matters, by Tom Kraeuter, ©2014 Training Resources, Inc., Hillsboro, Missouri. Get your copy at http://WorshipInHeaven.com)
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