This past weekend, I was in Alabama. I spent a little over ten years of my life in that state. These were very good years–for the most part. Saturday, I was there for a wedding. The daughter of some of our very best friends (for almost 20 years) was getting married. The wedding was in Birmingham in a church building located on a hill. It was a beautiful wedding and a great time to see friends who I have not seen in a long time. The next day, I preached in Jasper and was with George and Rene’, two of the finest people that I know. They have lived in that community and ministered to that church for 12 years. Over and over the people there told me how much they loved them.
It is a strange experience to go back to a place where you used to live. Things are the same and yet they aren’t. There are familiar sights and yet things are different. A new Krispy Kreme. Princeton’s, a once popular resturant is now closed. On and on, things are the same and yet they are different.
I am amazed that yesterday’s little girl who I saw playing with her dolls is now a beautiful bride.
I am amazed at yesterday’s young couple, who are now entering their 40’s and have a grandchild.
I am amazed at yesterday’s child who is now a social worker in Birmingham and married to a wonderful man.
I am amazed at our friends in whose home we ate a number of meals and now he has gone to be with the Lord. She remains–a sweet Christian lady.
I am amazed at our dear friends who have walked through life with us for almost twenty years and now they have a married daughter and new son-in-law.
I am amazed as I look in the mirror and see a 50 year old man staring at me. How could I be that old?
Things are the same and yet they aren’t. Time is moving by quickly. Our bodies grow older and then they die. Yet, in Christ, there is a newness and a freshness inside of us that can’t be touched by time. In Christ, I have a life that really is eternal.