10 For whoever has despised the day of small things shall rejoice…” ~ Zechariah 4:10a (RSV)
By Bro. John L. Cash
Well, sometimes when you’re a columnist you hit a nerve—in the best possible way. And last week’s story of “Lloyd and Rose” was met with a very sweet reception from my readers. (Click here if you missed it.) That’s probably because the desire to live a long life with the ones that we love is a universal longing. After all, it’s the closest thing we could have to heaven on earth.
I don’t have a long column today. There’s just one footnote that I want to add to last week’s piece. And that’s okay because most of the time it’s a single idea that changes everything for us. A thought always does more good than a thesis.
As I told you last week, Lloyd and Rose spent their last years of life in side-by-side hospital beds in a nursing home. One day they told me that they were glad to be together, even though they were bed patients. “We can’t walk any more, John, but we can talk to each other,” Rose told me. “We woke up at two o’clock this morning and talked for a long time. We were making plans about what we were going to do today.”
Well, this made me very curious. I wondered what kind of “plans” this ancient, bedridden, still-in-love married couple might we discussing in the middle of the night so I asked them about their early-morning conversation.
Lloyd said, “For one thing, there’s a girl who comes around with a cart at 2:30 in the afternoon. She gives everybody something to drink. There’s coffee, tea, juice, milk, and Ensure. Yesterday, Rose and I got cartons of chocolate milk. But today we’re probably going to get cranberry juice. There’s always a lot of things for us to talk about.”
I tell you that story to say this: True love that lasts a lifetime isn’t made of huge, major things. Instead it is built moment by moment from all the little daily things.
Fred Rogers (of “Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood” fame) said it like this: “Growing happens little by little. It’s tempting to think ‘a little’ isn’t significant and that only ‘a lot’ matters. But most things that are important in life start very small and change very slowly. And they don’t come with fanfare and bright lights.”
Last week’s post shows us where we want to end up. This week’s story shows us how to end up there. Oh, that the Lord will bless us on the journey!
Dr. John L. Cash is the “Country Preacher Dad.” He was raised in Stuttgart, Arkansas, and has spent the last 29 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, where he used to teach Latin on closed-circuit-television.) He and his lovely wife, Susan, live in the parsonage next door to the Antioch Christian Church (where the temperature dropped from 72 degrees to 28 degrees within a few hours this week.) Their kids include Spencer (age 23), his wife Madeline (age 23), and Seth (age 20).