June 2021 Newsletter
At a concert last week, a man came up to me, stuck out his hand and said, “I’m Reuben Wilson!” “Reuben Wilson! From college days?!”
Yes, I had not seen Reuben for 50 years! (I’m old!) He and his wife traveled to Holmes County from Columbus, Ohio just to hear our Tribute to Johnny Cash concert. He saw the advertisement while visiting and said, “I think I know that guy.” After the concert we sat in the hotel lobby and reminisced. How could it be 50 years?! We talked for an hour or so and then decided to have breakfast the next morning at Boyd & Wurthmann Restaurant here in Berlin.
On the way home after a long breakfast, I began to understand a statement that all the old fogies used to say: “Life is short.” My response was always, “Yeah, yeah, you old fogies are always thinking about the ‘good old days’ and how the younger generation doesn’t appreciate anything.”
Well, now that I am an old fogie, I realize that the older old fogies knew what they were talking about. They had experienced it. Life is short. Your children grow up fast. You grow old faster than your think. You can’t run as fast (if at all), there are aches and pains in places that you didn’t even know you had places… The fogies were trying to warn me. They didn’t use these phrases, but they were saying, “Redeem the time.” “Don’t miss life.” “Don’t mess around…” “Life is short!”
Which brings me to an amazing piece of time trivia that came to mind: I shook hands with a lady who shook hands with Abe Lincoln! Can you believe that?! Yes, I actually shook hands with a lady who shook hands with Abe Lincoln!
When I was a young boy, the farmer across the road was Jim Hoy. His mother, Kate, lived with him. She was born in 1859. In 1861 Abe Lincoln’s campaign train made whistle stops in Ohio. Jim Hoy said it stopped in Wooster. Local historians doubt that, but the train definitely stopped in Alliance. Kate’s father drove his horse and buggy to wherever it was to witness the event and Abe Lincoln reached out from his train car and shook little two year old Kate’s hand!
And 90 some years later, I shook Kate’s hand. (OK, I don’t remember actually “shaking her hand,” but I was in her living room enough remember that she patted me on the head a time or two.) The point is, I have a “physical connection” with a great president who was born over 200 years ago! And… is 200 years as long ago as I previously thought? Maybe Einstein was right: Time is relative.
Time. Sometimes it seems to drag. But no grandfather clock ever had “Time Drags” written on its face. Tempus fugit (Time flies) is the classic reminder. Don’t waste time. Life is short.
“Our greatest danger in life is in permitting the urgent things to crowd out the important.” -Charles Hummel
“The chief value of an anniversary is to call us to greater faithfulness in the time that is left.” -William Manning
“Redeem the time because the days are evil.” Eph. 5:16
“A thousand years are like a day.” -God (Ps. 90:4 and I Pet. 3:8)