Sorry Charlie !

My wife is surprised that I remember so many things from my childhood and adolescence … often things with no value at all. I’ll confess that jokes and funny stories stuck with me better than solutions to algebra problems. (And I’ve probably gotten more use out of them in life, but that’s another story).

For instance, did you ever see that television commercial about Charley the tuna? This goofy cartoon tuna fish works all the angles to get the tuna company to catch him and can him.

He thinks the fishermen want tuna with good taste so one time he decided to become an artist to impress them. Then we see the inevitable fishhook descend into the ocean towards the luckless fish with the note attached, “Sorry, Charlie!” In the background a voice informs us, “Starkist isn’t looking for tuna with good taste. They want tuna that tastes good.”

They don’t make commercials like that anymore.

Me too, Charlie!
They only took the cream of the crop and Charlie was somewhere short of the cream.

I know how you feel Charlie. I got the “Sorry Charlie” sign myself for awhile when I tried to come to God. I dressed myself up in all the good things I had done and tried to impress the Lord. “Sorry, David.” I looked for certain spiritual feelings when I prayed but the result was the same: “Sorry, David.”

I figured that I went to the best church there was but that didn’t seem to be enough even though we were RIGHT! “Sorry, David.”

Finally, I just decided to put my faith in Jesus-Christ, the Son of God. I believed that He died on the Cross for my sin. I believed that God raised Him from the dead. I knew I believed He was alive because I prayed to Him and was convinced He heard me.

I let Him cleanse me from my sin and make me a part of His eternal family. After that, I no longer got the “Sorry, David” note. Here’s the one I see now:

“Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life…” John 13:36.

Have you been getting the “Sorry, Charlie” sign recently as you tried to come to God? Try coming through repentance and faith in his Son Jesus. Like Charlie the tuna, you may not have what it takes but you’ve got an advantage. God changes all those who come to Him by faith in Jesus into His very own children.

And He’ll say, “Come on in Charley! (Or Joe or Ralph or Jane). You’ve been chosen!”


“Thou hast made us for thyself, O Lord, and our heart is restless until it finds its rest in thee.””
— Augustine of Hippo (The Confessions of Saint Augustine)

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