A couple of my readers know me in real life and are in fairly regular communication with me. One of them lives in Florida and is facing some health problems of late. I speak with him roughly once a month or more. Recently he has been troubled by a number of health issues that range from moderate to serious in nature.
It's nothing cancerous, thank God, but there are a few different things that are a bit "off" with him that are causing him daily back pain and considerable misery.
On top of that, he's basically at a point in his life right now where his motivation to do much of anything other than working on a few home improvement projects is, basically, close to nil. Being in somewhat the same boat myself, I know and understand the feeling.
So, to my fellow Christian brothers - if you have a moment to spare in prayer for reader WB, that would be greatly appreciated by both him and me.
He gets a lot of credit for the fact that I bent the knee and proclaimed Christ as Lord last year. It was his patient instruction and tireless explanation of the nature of the Bible and the ministry of Our Lord that helped sway my opinion and turn me over to the right side of the Long War.
He once asked me an interesting riddle during one of our long - VERY long - phone conversations:
Consider Rev. Billy Graham, a man who spearheaded a great revival of the Evangelical Christian churches throughout the country and who brought thousands, perhaps tens of thousands, to the blessed Word of Our Lord.
He was, undoubtedly, a great man, and he surely went on to receive great rewards in Our Father's Kingdom.
But is he necessarily greater than the man who brought him to Jesus?
It turns out, that man was merely a humble janitor, or some such. So - who is the greatest?
(It is not coincidental, by the way, that this riddle is stated in the Gospels.)
Finally, thank you as always to each and every one of you for your continued readership, patronage, and prayer. My message to you is one of hope and faith, but I have to tell you that these days, especially, it is really hard to maintain that hopeful tone sometimes. The world is a very harsh, mean, nasty, and brutal place, and it loves to drag us Christians down and beat us into senseless bloody pulp.
That's what life feels like quite a lot of the time these days - without purpose, without meaning, just one endless series of beatings broken up by grinding monotony. This is hard to bear, and I'm saying that as one of the "lucky" ones, so to speak. I know that many of you are in even worse positions than me. I pray for you regularly and I hope that you are safe, well, and cared for.
So my final word to you today is to do exactly what Our Lord commanded us to do: help each other bear their own crosses. Times are tough, they are getting tougher, and they will continue to be challenging for a long time yet.
Do not lose hope. Do not lose faith. Pray whenever you can, and be of good cheer, because things will get better one day.
For myself and on WB's behalf, many thanks for your prayers and support.