Born and raised in Grand Forks, Ben Jepsen serves from Gospel Chapel. He is married with two children. Photo: BenJepsen.com

Born and raised in Grand Forks, Ben Jepsen serves from Gospel Chapel. He is married with two children. Photo: BenJepsen.com

‘Don’t make a statue of me’

Do people actually trust you … within your inner circle?

By Ben Jepsen

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When I die, please don’t make a statue of me.

I should add this to my will.

No matter what I accomplish in this life, whatever you do, don’t make a statue of me.

If you really need to do something, give some money to a charity, church, or Bible camp or something, but don’t write my name down on a park bench or anything like that. The only place you should find my name is where my body is buried in the ground.

If you want to find me, that’s where I’ll be.

Throughout history, many amazing people have been honoured by having a statue made in their likeness.

Jesus, Buddha, Lady Liberty, Abraham Lincoln, Ronald McDonald and on and on.

Some of these statues are enormous and quite breathtaking.

One of the reasons we do this is to honour them but also to remember them and the work they did while on earth.

The more recent problem however is that people have started asking more questions about these people’s past.

Some digging has started, and people have realized that some of these figures were complete schmucks and idiots.

It is, for this reason, I plead with you no matter how tempted you might be please don’t make a statue of me.

Let’s not go and give more people in the world a reason to start digging into my past because, guess what?

They are going to find out that I was an idiot, too.

I did stupid things, said hurtful things, and made a ton of mistakes along the way.

I don’t know how anyone really could have a statue made of them in this day and age anyway.

At least before the ’80s, the internet didn’t exist so you couldn’t go find all the stupid things people posted online.

Now we are just giving a treasure trove of stupidity up for everyone to read and see.

Put a statue up of someone today and go look at what they did online for the world to see and you’ll be taking that baby down the day you finished it.

This begs the question, “What would I need to do with my life today in order that if a statue was made in my honour nothing could be said of my past that would warrant it being taken down?”

First, you would have to actually do something meaningful with your life that wouldn’t just bring personal gain but gain for thousands if not millions of people.

Secondly, you would have to live a life above reproach as the Bible would say.

Do people actually trust you in the wider context and even more importantly within your inner circle?

I am a stumbling mess but I am constantly trying to follow Jesus and allow Him to work on the mess of a life that I have.

That being said perhaps it would be a greater goal in my life to live as though a statue could be made and not be taken down.

What would that take?

Obviously, for me all glory must go to God for any good that comes from my life and nothing that comes from that is from my own strength or power because I don’t have any anyway.

This brings me to my last point.

Perhaps the best approach I can take in my life is to be soft workable clay that the potter can use and form for his purposes.

The best posture I can take is to be willing to be used by God.

To be shaped now and living life to the full today which is being present to the realities that God has before me.

God would never waste a moment, perhaps I need to start doing the same.

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Ben Jepsen is associate/youth Pastor at Gospel Chapter, Grand Forks.

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