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Archive for November, 2010

Who’s Your Daddy?

A seminary professor was vacationing with his wife in Gatlinburg, TN.
One morning, they were eating breakfast at little restaurant,  hoping
to enjoy a quiet, family meal. While they were waiting for  their
food, they noticed a distinguished looking, white-haired man  moving
from table to table, visiting with the guests. The professor leaned
over and whispered to his wife, "I hope he doesn’t come over here."
But sure enough, the man did come over to their table. "Where are you
folks from?" he asked in a friendly voice.

"Oklahoma,"  they answered.

"Great to have you here in Tennessee." the stranger said.  "What do
you do for a living?"

"I teach at a seminary," he replied.

"Oh, so you teach preachers how to preach, do you? Well, I’ve got a
really great story for you." And with that, the gentleman pulled up a
chair and sat down at the table with the couple. The professor groaned
and thought to himself, "Great… Just what I need another preacher
story!"

The man started, "See that mountain over there pointing out the
restaurant window". Not far from the base of that mountain, there was
a boy born to an unwed mother. He had a hard time growing up, because
every place he went, he was always asked the same question,

‘Hey boy, Who’s your daddy?’

"Whether he was at school, in the grocery store or drug store, people
would ask the same question, ‘Who’s your daddy?’

He would hide at recess and lunch time from other students. He would
avoid going in to stores because that question hurt him so bad. "When
he was about 12 years old, a new preacher came to his church. He would
always go in late and slip out early to avoid hearing the question,
‘Who’s your daddy?’. But one day, the new preacher said the
benediction so fast he got caught and had to walk out with the crowd.
"Just about the time he got to the back door, the new preacher, not
knowing anything about him, put his hand on his shoulder and asked
him, ‘Son, who’s your daddy?’ "

The whole church got deathly quiet. He could feel every eye in the
church looking at him. Now everyone would finally know the answer to
the question, ‘Who’s your daddy’. This new preacher, though, sensed
the situation around him and using discernment that only the Holy
Spirit could give, said the following to that scared little boy "’Wait
a minute!’ he said. ‘I know who you are. I see the family resemblance
now. You are a child of God. With that he patted the boy on his
shoulder and said, ‘Boy, you’ve got a great inheritance. Go and claim it.’
With that, the boy smiled for the first time in a long time and walked
out the door a changed person. He was never the same again.
Whenever anybody asked him, ‘Who’s your Daddy?’ he’d just tell them,
‘I’m a Child of God’." The distinguished gentleman got up from the
table and said, "Isn’t that a great story?"

The professor responded that it really was a great story!

As the man turned to leave, he said, "You know, if that new preacher
hadn’t told me that I was one of God’s children, I probably never
would have amounted to anything!" And he walked away.

The seminary professor and his wife were stunned. He called the
waitress over and asked her, "Do you know who that man was who just
left that was sitting at our table?"

The waitress grinned and said, "Of course. Everybody here knows him.
That’s Ben Hooper. He’s the former governor of  Tennessee!"

Someone in your life today needs a reminder that  they’re one of God’s
children!

A Simple Hello

I have always felt sympathy and compassion for the kids I see at
school walking all alone, for the ones that sit in the back of the
room while everyone snickers and makes fun of them. But I never did
anything about it. I guess I figured that someone else would. I did
not take the time to really think about the depth of their pain.

Then one day I thought what if I did take a moment out of my busy schedule
to simply say hello to someone without a friend or stop and chat with
someone eating by herself?

And I did. It felt good to brighten up someone else’s life. How did I
know I did?

Because I remembered the day a simple kind hello changed my life forever.

Stranger

A while ago, my Dad met a stranger who was new to our small town.  From the beginning, Dad was fascinated with this enchanting newcomer and soon invited him to live with our family.  The stranger was quickly accepted and was around from then on. 

As I grew up, I never questioned his place in my family.  In my young mind, he had a special niche.  My parents were complementary instructors: Mom taught me good from evil, and Dad taught me to obey.  But the stranger…he was our storyteller.  He would keep us spellbound for hours on end with adventures, mysteries and comedies.
If I wanted to know anything about politics, history or science, he always knew the answers about the past, understood the present and even seemed able to predict the future!  He took my family to the first major league ball game.  He made me laugh, and he made me cry.  The stranger never stopped talking, but Dad didn’t seem to mind.  

Sometimes, Mom would get up quietly while the rest of us were shushing each other to listen to what he had to say, and she would go to the kitchen for peace and quiet. (I wonder now if she ever prayed for the stranger to leave.)  

Dad ruled our household with certain moral convictions, but the stranger never felt obligated to honor them.  Profanity, for example, was not allowed in our home… Not from us, our friends or any visitors.  Our longtime visitor, however, got away with four-letter words that burned my ears and made my dad squirm and my mother blush.  My Dad didn’t permit the liberal use of alcohol.  But the stranger encouraged us to try it on a regular basis.  He made cigarettes look cool, cigars manly and pipes distinguished.  

He talked freely (much too freely!) about sex.  His comments were sometimes blatant, sometimes suggestive, and generally embarrassing.  

I now know that my early concepts about relationships were influenced strongly by the stranger.  Time after time, he opposed the values of my parents, yet he was seldom rebuked… And NEVER asked to leave.  

More than fifty years have passed since the stranger moved in with our family.  He has blended right in and is not nearly as fascinating as he was at first.  Still, if you could walk into my parents’ den today, you would still find him sitting over in his corner, waiting for someone to listen to him talk and watch him draw his pictures.

His name?…. .. .   

We just call him ‘TV.’

(Note: This should be required reading for every household!)

He has a wife now….We call her ‘Computer.’
Their first child is "Cell Phone".
Second child "I Pod"