Saturday, July 29, 2006
Soulshine Is Better Than Sunshine . . .
Last night, or rather early this morning, Julia and I walked in the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life. Almost a year ago my brother in-law died because of cancer and yesterday Julia's father was diagnosed with cancer. We thought it would be good to participate in the walk. It was a good night and there were several people there that we knew from town and from the church. We walked with our good friend Steve Lehew whose nephew died a while back and whose niece, just a few weeks after her brother died, was diagnosed with cancer.
I bring this up because I was listening to one of my very favorite songs "Soulshine" by the Allman Brothers Band. This song was played at Don's, my brother in-law, memorial celebration. Everytime I hear this song I smile and sometimes I cry.
"Life can take the strongest man and make him feel so alone . . . I think back to what by daddy said, he said it's always darkest before the dawn. Gotta let your soul shine, it's better than sun shine, it's better than moonshine, and it's damn sure better than rain. Oh, the people don't mind. We all get this way sometimes. Gotta let your soul shine, shine to the break of day."
I've been thinking and writing about John 6, just after Jesus feeds the five thousand with a boys lunch. Evening had come and the disciples crossed the lake. They had trouble because the wind picked up and it was dark. They had rowed a few miles out and that's when they saw him and were terrified, scared out of their minds. It's always darkest just before the dawn. It was of course Jesus they saw, walking on the water, toward the boat. No wonder they were so frightened. Jesus said to them, "It is I; do not be afraid." Then something else amazing happened. The disciples wanted to get Jesus into the boat, but immediately the boat reached the land where they were headed.
We walked from 11:00 until almost 1:00 am. Certainly not the darkest time of the night, especially with the football stadium's lights at full blast. It was a good time for us. A real means of grace as we thought of Don and Julia's dad. God is a gracious God and he is a faithful deliverer.