Well, I realize it has been a LONG time since I posted anything on here. Life has gotten busy all of a sudden for me – I got married this past summer, and things have ramped up this fall with finishing my last year of seminary and internship, praying and discerning where I might be assigned to for my first call as a pastor, gearing up for another year of coaching college wrestling, and of course, adjusting to and being intentional about life with my new wife, and making time for family.
It’s all got me thinking about how I’ll pull this all off, and if things will turn out ok. And I know for those of you who take time to read my blog, I suspect the same is true for you in some way. Speaking of my blog, I’m trying to decide where to go with it. I have some inklings, but as mentioned above, time hasn’t been great about letting me focus in on that. However, as you reflect and wonder where your life is taking you, where God is calling you and wrestling with those notions, here’s a thought, a pause along the way.
“Thank you” and “I’m gonna be alright.”
I got to hear former bishop of the ELCA (the first one!) Herb Chilstrom speak at my internship congregation a few weeks ago. He shared a story about his brother, who was born with mental disabilities, and who worked in a turkey packing plant for 25 years and then as a janitor in a nursing home. Quoting his story from memory, “Now I could’ve walked into that nursing home and introduced myself as Bishop of the ELCA. I could’ve said I was the president, and those people wouldn’t have given me a second glance. But if I told them I was Dave’s brother…than I was somebody. My brother had that kind of impact.”
At the end of his brother’s life, Bishop Chilstrom recalled two moments with his brother. One, in which he asked Dave to pray, and the prayer was thanking God for every little thing, ending it with “And thank you God, for everything. Amen.” The other moment was with death impending, Dave’s last words to a concerned brother was, “I’ll be alright. I’ll be alright.”
“Thank you” and “I’ll be alright.” My prayer for you (and really, a prayer for me) is that in all the things around you, you’re able to see them for the blessing from God they are, and simply give thanks. In that thanksgiving, may you know God’s presence and grace and in that, may it give you peace.
“Thanks be to God,” and for what God’s done, “I’ll be alright.”