Thursday, December 9, 2010
Thoughtful Thursday..The Ponderings of an Accidental Pastor's Wife
A Simple Testimony in an Unusual Place
I didn't want to be there and I wasn't happy about it. My Saturdays are my time to start a little slower and work on the household chores that I didn't get to during the week. With a quilt near completion, this was going to be my time to really knock it out, but instead I found myself here..in a place where I just had to be patient and wait. I was not impressed.
Funny how God has plans for us- often plans to teach us a lesson we didn't think we needed. Lately, pondering the commercialization of the season and the blatant lack of respect for all things holy- I have been trying to see how to keep Christ in focus - and how to share Him during the celebration of His birth-how to simplify things and truly honor my Lord. So, looking back now, it is plain to see how I ended up on a bench at the college waiting for one of my teens on a Saturday.
A young man sat by me, we have seen each other before and had simple conversations here and there about classes and thesis statements and such. Today I listened to him practice a speech, he asked me to give him some helpful hints for extending his time and sparking the listeners' attention. As I listened, I realized I was hearing a simple testimony; a view of holidays through the eyes of someone with a simple understanding and a family's simple purpose for celebrating.
The first point that sparked my attention was his comment about "eating until we are full, because we don't really get to most of the year." He talked of "pretty white rice" and gumbo filled with "lots of meats that is special on Christmas." As he went on, his thoughts went to his grandmother who made sure they "minded good" and took them to church; of "wearing his gifts all day and playing with everyone". What really touched my heart was his last few statements. He told me that he needs to "do everything he can to make his Saviour Jesus happy on His birthday because He makes him happy all the other times." How precious.
This young man is of simple understanding, yet his understanding is profound. He shared his faith and testimony unashamedly in plain speech that all could understand. In his closing statement he proclaimed that his Saviour Jesus was the real reason for celebrating." I couldn't have said it better myself...and I wouldn't. Instead of trying to help him "glam up" his speech, I encouraged him to share it the way it was...a revelation of his own heart and a glimpse into his private life.
My drive home was a reflective one...anger melted away...the to-do list just didn't seem as important. In my own desire to simplify the holiday, I was complicating. God showed me the simplicity of it all with a simple testimony in an unusual place.
*Note, the young man met up with me after his speech class to tell me how good his speech went and that his professor loved it. His classmates also gave him words of praise. As he left, he handed me a handful of chocolate kisses and simply said, "Thank you for helping me." Oh, no...thank you for helping me.