July 10

Written by Bill Grandi on July 10th, 2024

I posted yesterday about rereading Greg Murtha’s book, Out of the Blue. You can read that post here. In fact, I would encourage you to read it if you haven’t already done so, or to reread it to give yourself a “refresher course.” 🙂  If you are like me these days, it is way too easy to forget.

Now that you have reread that post, I’d like to continue my thoughts. In his book You Gotta Keep Dancin’, the late Tim Hansel closed with the following quote:

“There is no box made by God nor us but that the sides can be flattened out and the top blown off to make a dance floor on which to celebrate life.” (Kenneth Caraway)

As I have been rereading Greg’s marvelous book, I was reminded of that quote, especially after the closing quote by Hunter S. Thompson.  Tim also quotes someone named Sister Corita: “To believe in God is to know that all the rules will be fair-and that there will be many surprises!”  If there is one thing (among many) I know about God is that He is unpredictable. Ya just never know what He has on His plate for you. There are some things about God that never change. I stand firmly on the truth of His character and His Word. But I also know God works in ways I don’t expect.  I don’t always understand His ways or His purposes, but I trust Him to do what is best. Sometimes I balk at it. Sometimes I mope. Sometimes I cry. Sometimes I scream. Sometimes I rant and rave.

But above it all I know He is in charge and knows what is best.  I also know He is trying to mold me into the best version of Him I can become. He wants me to be more like Jesus. Sheldon Vanauken, the author of A Severe Mercy, wrote the following:

The best argument for Christianity is Christians: their joy, their certainty, their completeness. But the strongest argument against Christianity is also Christians-when they are somber and joyless, when they are self-righteous and smug in complacent consecration, when they are narrow and repressive, then Christianity dies a thousand deaths. (Murtha-p.xv-xvi)

I admit to being one of the smug, self-righteous, arrogant, narrow-minded (only if you agree with my camp will you make it to heaven) “Christians.” I have written before about how I rue that day and wish I could back to every church I preached at and every person I ever offended by my attitude and apologize. That is impossible, of course, but it still bugs me nonetheless.  I may be 71 but I still want God to do His work in and through me. I’m not ready to hang my hat by the door and leave it there.  I don’t know what the future holds…no one does. But as Doc Brown tells Marty and Jennifer at the end of Back to the Future III when talking about the future: “No one’s future has been written yet (I would disagree with that on biblical grounds), but make it a good one, both of you.”

That is indeed my prayer. I hope it will be yours also.  Let’s kick out those walls and dance.

 

6 Comments so far ↓

  1. Ryan S says:

    There is a lot to chew on here… However, probably the most impactful and thought provoking statement for me came from this quote…

    The best argument for Christianity is Christians: their joy, their certainty, their completeness. But the strongest argument against Christianity is also Christians-when they are somber and joyless, when they are self-righteous and smug in complacent consecration, when they are narrow and repressive, then Christianity dies a thousand deaths. (Murtha-p.xv-xvi)

    Jesus came to remove our burdens, not contribute to them. When I am not serving with joy in my heart…I need to really consider my motive and my expectations. I also need to look deep to see if I am attempting to pull the load with Jesus or my own strength.

    Good reminder this morning!

  2. Making a good future begins with making each day full of joy and thankfulness because we know our God is in control. Great reflection, Bill! Blessings!

  3. Linda Stoll says:

    You’re giving us so many good titles these days, Bill. My shelves runneth over, ya know?!

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