And then…there was One. He didn’t make the top ten list. He’s a bit of an enigma as I both have and have not met him personally. He’s probably confused me as much as he’s clarified things for me. On the great social issues of our day – he’s mostly silent. He wasn’t a Christian. Not White. Not Western. Said things that made his most committed followers want to stop following and things that made the worst of sinners love him. On one hand, simple, and on the other, profound. At the same time both clear and mysterious. Human and yet possessing divinity in a way we will never grasp. Intriguing. Winsome. Harsh. All things to all men, and yet nothing at all to others. A carpenter’s kid and the one who holds the universe together by his very breath. This is Jesus. He stands alone!

It just didn’t seem right to put him in any Top Ten List. He is above lists. He didn’t write any books so he hasn’t mentored me that way. I haven’t personally, physically met him like I’ve met some of the others I listed. How can I say that the one who created me – caused me to be alive both physically and spiritually, was my “mentor.” It would almost feel like a downgrade to say so. He’s not just “something” to me – he’s everything to me. It’s in him I most literally move, and breathe and think and live. He’s in all and yet above all. He’s the founding member of The Way, yet he’s not a member of it – because he is it. He doesn’t simply point us in the right direction or know the way to get somewhere – he is the direction.

All I have learned – even from the other 10 I’ve mentioned, came from Jesus. All goodness. All knowledge and understanding and power is his – and he’s loaned it to me.

I do know him, but I think more importantly, he knows me. And in some strange twist in how we think life works – the more I let him know me – the more I find life and freedom.

To my best friend. The one who has returned honor to a world in shame. My way, truth and life – Jesus. Thank you and forever I will thank you!