Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Clinging To What Is Good

Years ago I went on a mission trip to Lamar, Missouri to help build a church.  Lamar is a nice town with wonderful people.  It is located in the southwest corner of Missouri and is known primarily for being the birthplace of President Harry Truman (I saw his house, by the way).

After constructing the church, the members of our "Builders for Christ" team were invited to a restaurant called "The Apple Blossom" for a farewell dinner.  It wasn't a real fancy restaurant.  Basically a meat and vegetable type venue, but probably one of the most extravagant restaurants for Lamar, Missouri.  Yet, it was a wonderful meal, especially as we heard testimonies from those in the community who had been blessed by our work.

One man in particular wanted to give each member of the building team a gift.  He opened up a box and gave each of us a golf or working cap from the Isenhower Lumbar Company of Lamar, Missouri.  We all got to choose our own color.  I chose a reddish looking hat.  Even though I was extraordinarily blessed by the mission trip, e.g. the people, the fellowship, the work we accomplished, etc., little did I realize what a blessing that hat would be.

When I started running in 1997 as a hobby, I immediately starting running with a hat to try to keep the perspiration out of my eyes.  At some point, my red cap from Lamar, Missouri became my running hat.  As a matter of fact, I now run with this hat with every jog.  It's been washed over the years so that it now appears to look pink.  However, I absolutely, positively love that hat.  I can't imagine running without it.  I guess you could even say it is my signature hat.  When I die one day, people may say, "You know, you remember this guy.  He's the fellow who ran on the parkway with the pinkish red cap."

I guess you could say I cling to that cap.  I always search for it before a run.  Consequently, as long as the cap is in relatively good shape, I'll continue to run with it. 

Even though the cap is just temporary, I'm reminded in life of the numerous things we should cling to.  Romans 12:9 says to "cling to what is good".  Faith.  Family.  Fruits of the Spirit.  All of these entities should be grasped with extreme importance.  They are not just "old hat" like my worn out running cap.  Clinging to these things in both good times and bad will lead to joy, happiness and peace. 

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