This is one of my favorite stories about John Piper because it increases my admiration for how seriously Piper applies the effects of the gospel to his life. But there is an even more important reason this is a meaningful story to me. It is because this story has time and time again served a sanctifying purpose in the heart of a man who sees the seeds of self-promotion and ambition yearning to take root in the soil of my heart.

Dick Bott, the head of Bott Radio Network, one of the largest Christian radio networks in the world, has added John Piper to the daily broadcast schedule. He recently told Don how he decided one Sunday morning to fly up to Minneapolis in order to hear Pastor Piper preach at Bethlehem Baptist Church.

At some point in the service, Dr. Piper saw Dick and came over and invited him to his house for lunch.

After the service they all headed over to the house and began to engage in wonderful Christian fellowship. As they were talking, Dick was wondering if lunch was going to get cold, but assumed that somebody in the kitchen was preparing it or keeping it warm. They talked and talked and really enjoyed themselves well into the afternoon.

Then, Dr. Piper looked at his watch, jumped up, and said, “Hey! We’d better get to eating!”

He led Dick down the hall and into the kitchen. Hmmm… nothing laid out on the counter… nothing sitting on the table…

Dr. Piper came around the corner with a bunch of bowls and boxes of cereal. With no embarassment or apology he began serving up cold cereal for everyone! They sat down, started eating, and picked up the Christian fellowship right where they had left off!

Koinonia amidst Cocoa Puffs and Captain Crunch!

For those of us that know and love Dr. Piper, that is endearing story because it says so much about him. It mattered not that Piper is known throughout the world, and that he had a very influential Christian broadcaster in his house – when you’ve got such a single-focus vision for the glory of God – the slavery of self-love and self-promotion melts away. All that remains is authentic Christian joy.

Carnal pretentiousness – be gone from our lives!