The First Day of “Fall”
Today was a well-mannered September 1st. It was clear and cool the way it should be on the first day of school. In Wisconsin today was the first day of school. Here in Michigan it was not, but it should have been. I started the day with a thirty-minute walk and ended the day with a drive in the country–to the ice cream shop in Horton. It won’t seem proper to go for ice cream soon, so we made the drive because we know we will pine for the chance by the time June makes its way around again. Speaking of June, we have news:
Yesterday our son Wes and his wife Dylan had their second daughter. They named her June. She is blonde. Her dad was born with blonde hair. Little June is a born Texan. Now Haley has a little sister. Judging from the pictures Haley is making the adjustment big sisters have to make. Looks like we will be booking flights to Texas some time soon. This is grandchild sixteen. A couple more are on the way, maybe more. Who knows? Our clan has now grown to over 35 precious souls.
Tonight I saw a clip from our oldest grandson’s football game. They called the game early because one of the boys suffered a broken leg on a kickoff return. Lately I have noticed more than ever that it is impossible to play the game of life without injury, and usually the game doesn’t stop for you. It just keeps going. I console myself in the sweet doctrine of the sovereignty of God. Noting happens to me good or bad that he does not allow. What happens to me must pass through the fingers of God’s providence and he will turn it for my good and for his glory and I trust him. I hope the parents of the sweet injured boy tonight know about the goodness and the providence of God. I hope they know enough to curl up in the promises of God and wait for the sun to rise again. I hope they know His mercies will be new in the morning.
It is impossible to play the game of life without injury.
With a clan of 35 and growing, someone is always standing in the need of prayer. Lois and I pray more than we ever have and we don’t even have to try or read books on prayer. We just carry so many loved ones on our heart. The congregants of 42 years worth of churches and Christian ministries, the good folk of Bethel Church, they are all standing in the need of prayer. I know you are. If you want to tell me how I can pray for you I will.
A few days ago I visited a couple who were deeply burdened for loved ones. I wish I could have opened the door of my soul to them so they could see that I know exactly the burden they are carrying. We prayed together.
When our loved ones are injured or in any trouble, we will keep being an example. We will help when we can. We will pray continually, often in the wee hours of the night when we lie awake and turn our worries into petitions. We try to say what helps and be silent and listen well when that is what they need.
There is go much grief in the world tonight. I know some of it is yours. I will leave you with the words of Paul to his beloved friends from Ephesus when he met them in Miletas when he was on the way to Jerusalem and sober with the danger of it… “And now I entrust you to God and the message of his grace that is able to build you up and give you an inheritance with all those he has set apart for himself.” (Acts 20:32 NLT)
Reports are coming out of Afghanistan tonight that, after the American troops left, many believers are left behind among ruthless enemies who are searching them out house-to-house.
God help us to be faithful when you call us to suffer.
September 1, 2021