Well, hello there. Did you miss me? I was on vacation last week.
In preparation, I did all of the things that you would have expected. I had someone prepared to preach for me. I cut my grass. I stopped delivery of the mail and the newspaper. I asked someone to come to my home to feed my dog. I even went so far as to prepare my sermons in advance for the Sunday when I would return.
I was proud of myself and ready for a little R&R. My wife and I headed to the mountains of north Georgia. I love the mountains. They are a beautiful part of God’s creation.
On Wednesday, I went to a golf course and lost a half a dozen balls, but enjoyed the views and cool weather.
Upon returning to the hotel I checked my email inbox and discovered a message. "Pastor Butler, I’ve not received an article from you for this week. I need it in the next hour if it is to be included." And of course, it was five hours later that I read the message.
Now, I have to admit this to you. This was not the most embarrassing thing I’ve ever done. Oh no. I’ve been far more red-faced than that. I’ve embarrassed myself, my wife, my boys, my parents and probably folks I didn’t even realize were paying attention.
But, I was frustrated with myself. I consider myself to be organized and prepared. As I said, my sermons for July 9 were ready to preach on June 30. I didn’t even have to make a run to the store for shaving cream or toothpaste. I remembered everything, except for that one thing. No article for the paper.
Well, I know it’s not the end of the world. Of my known five faithful readers, one is out of town for the summer (my mother-in-law is in Florida with her other daughter). The world didn’t end because the paper was devoid of my writings.
Still I was upset with myself. How could I forget something like that? And then I remember that I am a sinful human, and that I am constantly in need of grace.
This was not the first mistake I’ve made this month, and it won’t be the last. I serve a loving God who willingly forgives my faults when I seek His grace.
Thank God for his grace. Praise him for his forgiveness. He is better to us than we deserve. For that we should all be grateful.