14 But I trusted in thee, O LORD: I said, Thou art my God.
15 My times are in thy hand.
Psalm 31:14, 15a (King James Version)
By Bro. John L. Cash
Well, today’s column is being brought about by a number of remarkable “firsts”. This is my first column that I’ve ever typed aboard a moving bus. (I’m on my way to visit some relatives for the Christmas season.) Also, it’ll be the first column ever sent to my editor over the World Wide Web via the wi-fi network on a moving bus. Pretty remarkable, don’t you think?
Sometimes I stop and think about how much things have changed since I first became a country preacher almost 30 years ago. I don’t think that back then I could have even conceived of having a computer small enough to use on a bus or of busses providing electrical receptacles for electronic devices. I had no idea back then that I’d be writing for a magazine that would never be printed on paper, but that people all over the world would read on portable telephones. My, my, how times have changed!
When Susan and I were first married, her mother said, “John, you are such a tranquil person. You just seem like you would like to have things be exactly the same every day.” Well, I don’t know about the “tranquil” part, but I will tell you that I am a person who really doesn’t like for things to change. I’ve had a lot of happiness in my life, and I would love to always be surrounded by the people and places that I love. I’ve always wished that things would stay the same, and that happy times and the people that I love would never go away.
But I’ve undergone a change in thinking over the past several years. Once when I was lamenting to my sister Cathie about how much I hated change, she pointed out to me that in this life change is the only thing that we can be certain of. And because she said that, I had a realization that I’d never had before. It’s foolish to hate and resist change—because change is the only sure thing in this life.
So, I stopped trying to hang on to the past. Instead I’m trying to remember and cherish the past, and to learn from it. And I’m doing my best to use every good change that comes along to try to make this world more the way our Lord would have it be. I plan on doing my best in this world (that never stays the same), so that one day I can exchange it for a Home that never changes. It’s just like the martyred missionary Jim Elliot once wrote “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose.”
In this good New Year, let’s strive to do our best. Let’s make to most of every new thing that our Saviour brings into our lives in 2014.
Gotta run now. The bus driver has stopped the bus for a bathroom break. I’ve got to buy some earbuds so I can listen to some mp3s….)
Dr. John L. Cash is the “Country Preacher Dad.” He was raised in Stuttgart, Arkansas, and has spent the last 28 years being a country preacher in the piney woods five miles south of the little town of Hickory, Mississippi. (On week days has a desk-job at a public school, and until recently taught Latin on closed-circuit-television.) He and his lovely wife, Susan, live in the parsonage next door to the Antioch Christian Church (where the Preacher and his wife were happy to have all their kids at home this Christmas.) Their kids include Spencer (age 22) and his wife Madeline (age 22), and Seth (age 19).