Thursday, July 30, 2015

"I think America's food culture is embedded in fast-food culture. And the real question that we have is: How are we going to teach slow-food values in a fast-food world? Of course, it's very, very difficult to do, especially when children have grown up eating fast food and the values that go with that." ~ Alice Waters, Amercian chef specializing in organic cuisine

Here we are again and it's Thursday, July 30, 2015, and I'm hoping that one of those widely scattered pop up showers will pop up and scatter itself on our place this afternoon. A great missionary in the Philippines wrote a piece the other day where he did a little bit of a tongue in cheek update. They minister from a sailing vessel. They had been out for weeks. As they approached a larger port he began to report on a glow in the distance. A light. A beautiful sight. One they had longed to see again and there it was. Their hearts beat high with expectation as they neared port. The object of their desire was shining ever so brightly. The Golden Arches of McDonald's. He then went on to describe the double quarter pounder he was anticipating. It was a very cute story. I can identify. Back in the mid 1990's we spent some time in the United Kingdom, mostly in Scotland. After a week touring Scotland where we enjoyed all the sights and sounds we began our journey back towards Manchester, England where we would connect for a flight back to London and then back to the states. While in Scotland we were treated to wonderful menus made up of their local cuisine. A week of them. We enjoyed it all but we also knew there was a McDonald's in the big mall in Manchester. We could hardly wait. We took very little time to get settled in our hotel before we hurried over to that mall. It was not 100% the same as here in the states but it was close enough. Close enough indeed!

I know it may sound trite but life really is about making a difference. This week we lost a dear friend and soldier of the cross. He was 80 years young and leaves behind a legacy of faith and action. In many ways he was a throwback of sorts in that he really did say what he meant and he meant what he said. When I think of his life I think about his hard work on behalf of his family and on behalf of his Lord. I think about the word integrity. He was a character but a lovable one who had an impact on our family. We thank God for Bro. Carl and the example he lived out before us all. Also there's this couple we served together with one time when we were members of the same Church. A couple of weeks ago they loaded up a big bus and headed to camp. Junior kids. This was their last time to make this trip since they are handing off the torch after forty years of serving children. That's right folks. Forty years. I think of Ruth and Wayne and I immediately see genuineness and a selfless life. When their daughter announced this change in their ministry on Facebook the testimonies began to pour in. One by one, from those young and those now much older, accounts of how these two people had been the heart and hands of Jesus in their life. Here's my take: What a privilege to know people like this and what a challenge to us all to follow their example.

I suppose we all have our own thoughts about our own personal faith hall of fame. No one who reads my blogs would need to reminded that my grandfather, Paw Paw Mac, would be one of the standard bearers on my list. I thought about the late football coach Bum Phillips' response when asked if he thought running back Earl Campbell was the greatest of all time, "I don't know if he's the best, but it won't take long to call the roll." I feel that way about so many folks who have lived out their faith in the life that God gave to them and in so doing they impacted my sojourn here on the planet. No. They, for the most part, were not people who gained a lot of fame or fortune but they took what God provided and they multiplied it through their testimony that was actively demonstrated to any and all who came in contact with them. I'll not start naming names and I don't think putting them in any order really has merit. I've said all of this to remind us that you and I are no doubt thought of by others as to our influence and impact on them. May God help us to do our best to make that influence and impact a positive one that not only helps them but brings honor and glory to God. Now that, my friend, is a goal worthy of us all. Amen and Amen.   ....More later.

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