Thursday, August 13, 2009

Reflections on the First Day of School

I was thinking about Benjamin's first day of school yesterday. Here is a thought I had. It will be my column on Sunday:

Like many of you, we took our son Benjamin to his first day of school on Wednesday. He is a third grader now. Before school, we took pictures of him. His little brother David snuck into a few of them. He also got a picture taken with me and one with Amber. As I was downloading the pictures, I looked back at his pictures from Kindergarten, 1st Grade, and 2nd Grade. I noticed I was wearing the same shirt in his first grade picture that I wore on Wednesday.

It is a grey t-shirt made by Adidas. I wear it a few times a week. It is mostly polyester with a little cotton. It used to be fairly thick, but is getting thinner every time I wear it and every time I wash it. It used to have florescent, bright orange lettering on the front and back. Now it is no longer florescent or bright, just a muted shade of orange on the cracking letters and numbers. The writing on the front says, “I Eat Marathons for Breakfast.” On the back there is a big “4.”

I have owned the shirt over three years. I probably wear it twice a week when I run. With 300 uses and an average of 9 miles per use, the shirt has travelled 2,700 miles in its lifetime – roughly the distance between New York City and Los Angeles. Occasionally it even makes it out during the day, assuming it is clean: Saturdays and an occasional weekday if I know that I’m going to be in lock-down in my office behind a computer.

You are probably wondering why I am telling you about this shirt. Well here’s the deal: this shirt will be retired one day. It will either get a hole in it or it may disintegrate or Amber may just get sick of it and throw it away. There is something in my life and something in your life that will last forever: The Bible.

The words of the Sacred Book are trustworthy and they are true. It is a story of God’s work among God’s children. They apply to people today just like they have applied to God’s children since the day they were first spoken. These words talk about life’s most essential elements: hope, peace, forgiveness, sex, relationships, anger, abundant life, eternal life, prayer, healing, how to handle money, how to be a spouse, how to be a parent, worrying, fear, serving, loving, giving, and living. In short it is God’s love letter to His children.

I encourage you to dig into God’s Word. We have many Bibles at our information table. Start with the book of Matthew or Luke and read about Jesus. Then go into Romans or another of Paul’s letters. By reading a chapter a day (about five minutes a day) we will allow God to speak to us. Enjoy the journey through life’s most precious Book.

In Christ,


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