One of our readers was a fellow alum of Wheaton College, and appreciated my Catch on Wednesday about ordering an alumni license plate cover from the college bookstore. You were one class ahead of me, Hal. I was class of ’69. That means your senior year was the year V. Raymond Edman, President of the college from 1941-1965, died in chapel delivering his last chapel talk. “The King is coming…” were his last words, and, indeed, He came. Were you there? That was a seminal moment, when a great saint died doing what he loved the most: preaching the word of God. It always reminded me of Enoch who walked so close with God that God didn’t even bother with his death, He just took him home, or as the King James puts it so eloquently: “Enoch was not, for God took him.”
In my reply to Hal, who incidentally was thinking about getting one of those license plates himself, I encouraged him to do it for the following reason: “Go for it. A Christmas present to yourself! Every time you get in your car you can think about how that was an important time in your life and you want to be faithful to your calling. That’s why I got it.” And in writing that, I remembered the reason why: I wanted to pull together an important time in my life and give it perspective. We all have times we need to remember in our lives — memorial stones when God met us, or we made lasting lifetime decisions. Maybe for you it was a family vacation or an experience at summer camp, a study abroad, or your own college experience — it’s good to have something you can mark those times with, because they are significant and life is short (and getting shorter by the minute).
Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob all did this. They would stop and build a stone altar on the very ground they were standing when God spoke to them in a significant way so that when they, or anyone else, for that matter, passed by, they would remember God met them there and a transaction took place. I see no reason why an alumni license plate can’t be a memorial stone — an altar to seal an important meeting, a turning point, a moment that effected every area of your life from then on.
Take a moment today to reflect on a memorial stone of your own. What would it be? Can you get there in your mind? Can you remember the transaction? Have you been faithful? Not perfect. I didn’t say perfect, just faithful, meaning you’re still acting on it in some way in your life?
And if you’d like, share it with someone else or write us about it. Get it out of your head and into the real world where it can do some good for you and for others as family and friends. It will help you tell your story.