Wednesday, November 22, 2006
Be cheerful no matter what; pray all the time; thank God no matter what happens. This is the way God wants you who belong to Christ Jesus to live. (1 Thes. 5:16-18 Message Bible).
No big post. Only thanks.
Thanks to Jesus for everything. Really. Thanks to my wife for putting up with me for over 28 years...she's a saint. Thanks to my kids for being pk's and still loving Jesus. Thanks to the big hearts and big vision of the people of the Vineyard for creating the most amazing place for the sure and not-so-sure to feel loved. Thanks to VCC staff: the hardest-working and most merciful church staff ever. Thanks to my mom who is as feisty as ever at 79 and survived the teenage years of my brother and me. Thanks to all the musicians I got the privilege of playing with for so many years. Thanks to my friends from the Mt. Airy Men's Shelter and Washington Park for reminding me how simple love is. Thanks to the churches of Cincinnati who impacted me in so many ways at so many different times and levels. Thanks for the writings of C. S. Lewis...I think they saved my live. Thanks to my small group for being real. Thanks to Steve & Janie for coming here in 1983. Thanks to Clyde Miller who took me on a road trip through Romans. Thanks to my dad who was the first to surrender to God after all of us left home. He blazed the trail. Thanks to Bonnie and Robbie. Thanks.
French philosopher and mathematician Blaise Pascal was 31 years old when he had an accident that changed the arc of his life. He was nearly killed when horses pulling his carriage bolted on a bridge and he was left dangling over the river Seine. He said he had a vision of God while unconscious and later wrote it down on paper that he kept in the lining of his coat the rest of his life. Part of it said, “The year of grace 1654. Monday November 23rd…certainty, certainty, feeling, joy, peace. God of Jesus Christ…Joy, joy, joy, tears of joy…May I never be separated from him…Reconciliation sweet and complete.” He was forever changed and died only eight years later.
Plus, you’ve got to love a guy who wrote, “It is not certain that everything is uncertain.” Hey, tomorrow is his 352nd re-birthday.
And so I say: Thanks, thanks, thanks, tears of thanks.
Happy Thanksgiving. Hope it's filled with grace.
ps. It was on this day in 1963 that the patron saint of evangelicalism died: C. S. Lewis. It was overshadowed by the tragic assassination of President John Kennedy.