Pebbles thrown

th-19

Well, I’m overwhelmed. I am awash in kind words and well wishes. I’m so enjoying reading all your stories and comments. So much so that I’m going to need another day to respond to them all. Thank you to everyone who took the time to comment.

I remember when Mark Heard died there were hundreds of comments — many deep, and personal — on his Facebook page, and I couldn’t help but think how sad it was that he never got to read them. I feel like I’m getting to read some of mine without dying!

One comment in particular stood out. It was from Dr. Carolyn Tennant, former Vice President, Academic Affairs, at North Central University (NCU) in Minneapolis. Carolyn is one of the smartest people I know with spiritual smarts to go along with a very lively mind that is culturally and biblically aware. I used to love it when I got booked at NCU because I knew I would get to spend some stimulating time with Carolyn. Yesterday she wrote, “Just a couple of weeks ago, a former student was quoting something you had said several decades ago. I love how the pebbles thrown into the lake make ripples that keep moving outward.”

It’s the ripple effect, and I’m sure we are all making ripples even today. Those ripples eventually reach the shore, and when they do, they cover a wide area touching people we won’t ever know. It could be as small a pebble as a word here, or a smile there, but it moves out like a ripple and it doesn’t come back. I have no idea what comment I made that stuck with a student for decades, but the Holy Spirit gave it the staying power. Be encouraged; you are making ripples you don’t know about. Jesus said we would be making disciples by passing on what He has taught us. That’s why we learn, so we can pass it on to others like pebbles thrown in a lake.

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4 Responses to Pebbles thrown

  1. Carolyn Tennant says:

    Blessings, John! You are always so kind…. Thanks for making ripples in my life!

  2. Sandie says:

    Everything we do or say, or even think. makes a ripple. We must make sure those pebbles we drop are worthy of a King! Blessings to you on your birthday John – you have surely tossed many worthy pebbles!

  3. Todays message is a confirmation to my prayers and meditations from this morning: I felt I was asked to try and remember every persons name who touched my life in some way whether positively, or with negative intent, or under (so-called) neutral circumstances. I was also compelled to recollect those people whom I myself have touched in similar manners.

    Then, I was to simply give thanks to God for every one of these individuals by name, along with those whose names I have forgotten – or have never known personally – but whom have had an impact on my life to this day (I can still see their faces).
    What a mental exercise it was and I’m sure I’ve not yet recalled everybody!

    I was moved to tears of gratitude as I spoke the names of my wife and children, parents and siblings, past and present relatives, in-laws (and outlaws!).
    And then I thought about the others I’ve shared life with: childhood friends and neighbors, schoolmates and teachers, bullies and rivals, former girlfriends and lost loves, work associates and bosses, fellow transit-commuters and carpoolers, bus drivers and airline pilots, store clerks and restaurant servers, janitors and custodians, homeless folks and transients, police officers and military personnel, lawmakers and judges, prison guards and cellmates, 911 dispatchers and EMTs, doctors and nurses, elder and palliative care attendants, chaplains and pastors, zealots and atheists, churchgoers and backsliders, and all of my pets too,… oh, the list goes on!

    I was then asked to pray with gratefulness for the people I have never met (or am unlikely to meet) – including those with whom I disagree or am biased against – who have still affected my life in some fashion: popes, presidents, politicians, puppets, kings, queens, despots, dictators, tyrants, celebrities, charlatans, opportunists, profiteers, scoundrels,.. oh, the list goes on!

    And finally, with utmost gratitude, I was to be thankful for Jesus Christ:
    The Rock that created the greatest ripple of them all.
    In the entire universe.
    Amen.

    I am the shoreline to where these ripples have journeyed across the great gulf.
    Am I pristine, pallid, or polluted?
    I guess it depends on what kind of pebbles, if any, I cast into the water…

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