Bill Grace


Tale of a Once Upon a Time Christmas Gift for Me from the Deity


God has a sense of humor and
If you have time I have a tale.
In military basic training land
The youngsters - not always young - always come to chapel.
It is the only place where they are free
Loosed temporarily from the fetters of their captivity
It is a place of pressure and of pain
This military basic training lane
Access to the military the goal to be gained.
The process lasts about twelve weeks
Twelve being the number choosen by our greatest teacher.

On Christmas Eve with help from wife
Her intent being to help ease my preaching strife
A great sermon was spoken to the uniformed throng
Their attentiveness told me absolutely nothing was wrong
A great sermon preached to a sea of faces
A little less pain in one of God's strange places.

But the best was yet to be
For God's sense of humor held a gift for me
That in that night of greatest pastoral power
A goal of rich adolescent vision had come to flower.
The goal was to preach in a great filled cathedral
And to do it with an excellence almost sudoral
To do it so well that half would return
To do it so well only half Christ would spurn,
At least as far as his worship would go
The ethical part is still very much in tow.

So God may or may not have a plan
But I suspect She chuckles when She observes man
And although cold stone the structure was not
A legion it could comfortably hold
The half of which were almost down right told
By circumstances beyond their personal control
That to chapel next week they would return
If only for encouragement their first strip to earn.

This is a genunine gift God gave to me
The purpose I think to help me see
That though youthful ambition errs by aiming high
The calculus of our lives belong to the Big Guy.


Note on the use of 'She' to refer to God. It was Oswald Chambers' 'My Utmost for His Highest' that educated me to this in the scriptural sense.

Submitted: Thursday, December 25, 2008
Edited: Thursday, December 25, 2008

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