So do you recognize any of the above names? Yeah, I thought you might have. After all those are some famous people up there.
Joe Montana was one of the greatest quarterbacks to ever play in the NFL. He had 4 Superbowl appearances winning all of them. Sports illustrated rated him the number one clutch quarterback of all-time. I still believe he holds the postseason record for most career touchdown passes. The 49er’s retired his jersey number 16 in 1993. He inherited the nickname “Joe Cool” for his ability to stay calm under pressure in the “pocket.”
Joe DiMaggio is a little before my time…OK, he is a lot before my time. But I like baseball and you can’t spend anytime around baseball without hearing about Joe DiMaggio. Joe was a 3 time MVP and 13 time all-star election. He is perhaps best known for his 56-game hitting streak, a record that still stands. His only baseball problem was that he was a Yankee.
Joe Biden…Not much to say here!
Bazooka Joe is perhaps one of my favorite Joes in the list. Do you remember Bazooka Joe? He was that funny cartoon character that came wrapped around Bazooka bubble gum. You know that square-shaped gum that looked like it was cut from a piece of washing board and was so hard that it could sometimes be mistaken for as a piece of hard candy. Yeah, I loved that stuff as a kid! I used to stick like 4 -5 pieces in my mouth at a time and chew it until my jaw hurt, which by the way didn’t take very long when you’re chewing on something that has the same consistency as rawhide. During my chewing, I would unwrap the cartoons and read about Bazooka Joe and his misadventures with his motley crew of neighborhood pals and a mutt named Walkie Talkie. The only problem with this gum was that it stuck to my dentures. Yeah, I have dentures…probably the only 7-year-old in town who had to scrape old bazooka off his teeth before bedtime.
Joe Mamma…not quite sure on the etymology of this phrase, but it is fun to say. I don’t know if I would use it around a bunch of sophisticate’s, but with friends and family it is a blast. The beauty of this phrase is that it works in almost any dialog. It can be used as an answer to almost any question. For instance, “Hey Tim, what time is it?”…”Joe Mamma!” or “Jennie, what’s for dinner?” “Joe Mamma!” Get the point? Try it for yourself and see how fun it is. I promise, it won’t disapoint…that is of course unless you are sophisticated.
G.I. Joe also holds some fond memories for me as a kid. There is nothing better in a little boys life than to have toys that allow you to pretend to shoot and blow stuff up. I have a fond memory of playing with these toys behind my aunt’s house on Memorial Drive with my cousin Mike. It was a summer day and we turned the hose on to create a small mud pit for an awesome battle made out of plastic war heroes. It was an awesome time, that is until I lost my favorite renegade in the mud, disappointed I couldn’t give him a proper burial.
The last Joe I want to talk about wasn’t mentioned in the list above. But his impact on my life goes far and beyond the impact of all the previous Joe’s combined. His name is Joseph, husband of Mary and earthly father of Jesus.
The Bible doesn’t talk a whole lot about Joseph. He never threw a football with laser like precision or swung a bat with tenacity. He wasn’t a war hero, vice president or bubble gum extraordinaire. And I highly doubt he ever used the phrase “Joe Mamma” when responding to Mary. While in the world’s eyes of success, Joseph didn’t amount to much, he is a man who God entrusted to raise the Savior of the world.
When I look at my own life, I don’t amount to much in terms of earthly success. I don’t have fame or fortune. I don’t own my own franchise or business and when I throw a football, many times it resembles a fowl being shot out of the air on opening day of duck season.
So, what’s your point Tim. It sounds like a pity party to me.
I just get excited to see how God uses ordinary people doing ordinary things to accomplish extraordinary tasks. All Joseph was, was a carpenter. All Joseph was, was a dad. A dad who went to work, supported his family and loved his children. He was an ordinary man who loved God and was used to raise the King of Kings.
Feeling ordinary? Good, God uses ordinary people…God uses the average Joe’s.
Honduras, I hope you are ready for another average Joe!