All Things New - 10.30.2017

This is the Lord's doing; it is marvelous in our eyes.

- Psalm 118:23

Over the weekend, I had the chance to visit Nashville, TN with some friends. On Saturday afternoon, we enjoyed a guided tour of the Ryman Theater, original home to the Grand Ole Opry, and then live music at several venues. The capper to our great time together was dinner seasoned with the sweet sounds of a Grammy Award-winning blues guitarist at B.B. King’s Blues Club. The gentleman previously toured with B.B. King, and was nothing short of amazing. 

Perhaps overcome by my enjoyment of the moment, not to mention the best catfish I’ve ever eaten, I leaned over to a Nashville native sitting near me and remarked, “Isn’t this incredible?!” I expected eager agreement. I didn’t get it. 

You know what he said back to me? I couldn’t believe it. I still can’t believe it. He said, “Yeah, he’s pretty good.”

Pretty good? Pretty good? I was out of my mind with indignation. I wanted to throw a piece of catfish at him, and I would have done it if it weren’t - as previously mentioned - the best catfish I’ve ever eaten. He wasn’t worth it. 

Trying to make sense of it later, I developed a theory. It’s simple. He’s not a weenie. He’s just spoiled. 

The guy lives in Nashville, TN. Nashville is filled with excellent musicians. People carry guitar cases around Nashville like people from my hometown of Buffalo carry snow shovels. They’re playing on the streets, in every restaurant - everywhere. This gent is probably accustomed to visiting any of a hundred nightclubs and finding world class musicians waiting for him. He’s around greatness all the time, and so he’s lost sight of just how great it is. 

The more I thought about it, the less I wanted to throw catfish at him. As much as I wanted to condemn him, I realized that I’m just like him. I’m around God’s greatness all the time, and so lose sight of just how great it is. I don’t marvel at God the way I should. I don’t take time to notice his power and beauty in creation, and so don’t stand in proper awe and reverence of him. I take his Word and sacraments for granted. I take prayer for granted. I take his forgiveness for granted. I take it all for granted. I take him for granted. 

And why? Because his goodness to me is so pervasive and persistent. God is a given for me. And I’m downright spoiled by his love. What a weenie, I am! 

Now some of you might want to throw catfish at me. I wouldn’t blame you. Please: if you do, just make sure it’s B.B. King’s Blues Club catfish. I’ll catch it like a seal at Sea World. 

However, I imagine most of you can relate. Our God is good - so good. And because he’s so dependable, it’s easy to take him and his goodness for granted. 

Last thing. Yes, I know that some of you are facing difficult times and might be thinking God isn’t so good. I’ve been there, too. You’re not alone. If that’s the case, please read this post from one of those with whom I traveled to Nashville. In my opinion, my friend, Erik, speaks some raw and necessary truth that you might find helpful. 

Child of God: As you start your day, why not take some time to meditate on God’s many blessings, and the evidences of his goodness and grace to you? Maybe a special look at routine graces will thrill your heart anew. 

You’re loved. Don’t forget it. 

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