Sunday morning, I woke up mostly refreshed and ready to go. Surprisingly, my cold was still present, but only a fraction of what it had been. I have never had that dramatic a turnaround inside of a few hours before in my life!
We got ready and went to church. Beth had already told our worship team leader I probably wouldn’t sing, but I felt fine. I’m a tenor, and often tell people that “real men sing real high.” I wasn’t confident in my ability to hit the high notes, but one of our singers gave me a few Fisherman’s Friend cough drops. Between the miraculous health turnaround, and the cough drops, I sang better and “purer” than I have in a while. Very cool!
Pastor Bob gave his message, dealing mostly with fasting as presented in the New Testimant. Our Elders have called for a church-wide fast, starting on March 1, and continuing for a week. I will post on that topic another time.
The message was timely and well done (no shocker there), and I was called forward to give the presentation. The report went very well, and I could feel God’s presence. At the end, I was grateful for God’s blessing, and was told by a number of people that it was well done.
What surprised me was how I felt most of the rest of Sunday. I have been in theater productions, singing, band, and other “performance” type things most of my life. And normally afterwards I’m jazzed, elated, high as a kite. Not this time. I couldn’t really place it, but if anything I felt like I was unworthy. I was uncomfortable with the kind words spoken to me after the talk.
T.H. White wrote a book, The Once and Future King, consisting of three stories of King Arthur and his knights. I am relating the following from memory, but I have not read the book in several years. Almost every legend of King Arthur contains an affair between Lancelot and Guinevere. In White’s version, they are in anguish over their affair, as they both love Arthur, but seem compelled to continue the affair.
In the second “book,” a knight falls ill, and it is determined that the only thing that will save him is the touch of a knight that is “pure.” Lancelot is considered to be the “purest of the pure,” but refuses to touch the sick knight, due to his affair with Guinevere. The other knights try, but nothing works, and the ill knight is dying. Lancelot, dreading the moment, steps forward to touch the knight. He knows that when he does, the truth will out. But he has no choice; he touches the knight. And the knight is healed. The kingdom rejoices, the knights celebrate, but Lancelot, kneeling on the ground, weeps with a broken heart. He knows the truth, and God, in His graciousness, worked through Lancelot in spite of Lancelot’s deficiencies.
That’s how I felt yesterday. Totally unworthy, and levelled by God’s grace. Rather than being elated, I was troubled. Unworthy. Low. Amazed that God can speak through someone like me. “Oh, wreched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?” Romans 7:24. I am just not used to God usingme!
I wasn’t exactly depressed, but I was other than happy. And I was that way most of the day.
But it occurred to me that I couldn’t stay that way, and Beth encouraged me to not get stuck in that place. I think that’s the trick. I think it’s good that I reacted as I did, but if I stayed there it would turn into a blackness that would just drag me back where I was before. That is the last thing I want at this point in my life. So, praise God! If I did well, if I did poorly, God loves me no less and no more, and wants relationship with me. That is beyond cool.