We call it our 'preacher's weekend.' We leave home a day early and return on Saturday afternoon so that Sunday can go on as normal. Thus our plan for Memorial Day weekend was to leave for the cottage late Wednesday afternoon and return home on Saturday.
The plan worked great - except for one little hiccup. My laptop and case with a few little projects to work on in the mornings were brought safely home from church, but were never transferred to the van that we took up north. It was not until we were unpacking at Houghton Lake that I noticed that I would spend this 'preacher's weekend' without both laptop and iPad!
Which meant, for the first time since I am not sure when, no Thursday's Thirst would be sent out. After working through my angst with an episode or two of Matlock, I started checking my email (I did have my iPhone along) for messages from those who noticed that their Thursday's Thirst was missing ... but no messages were were received ... ever!
This left me in a state of quandary. Either the 600 people who normally receive Thursday's Thirst were so considerate of me that they intentionally did not harass me about it not coming their way, ... or ... it has so little impact upon their lives that it was not even noticed to be missing! "Perhaps," I thought to myself, "the world would be better all around if Thursday's Thirst quietly vanished from the earth."
It clearly was a case of asking "Is the cup half empty or half full?" The guidance our Lord Jesus offers is "Brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things." (Philippians 4.8) In other words, our cup is always half full with Jesus ... and that is only half of the story, for the truth is "our cup overflows" (Psalm 23.5) ... and more, for I have been told to "speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and cry to her that her warfare is ended, that her iniquity is pardoned, that she has received from the Lord's hand double for all her sins." (Isaiah 40.2)
By God's grace, no mater what the circumstance, every time we view our cup as approaching empty we are lying to ourselves - and spitting in the face of our God and Savior, Jesus. He keeps filling our cup to overflowing with his goodness and mercy - and always has a second cup filled for us in reserve! This also means that if just one Thursday's Thirst touches one heart with the Good News of Jesus it is worth the effort. In fact, everything we do to get the word of his love and grace out is worthwhile (Have you ever read Isaiah 55.10-11?).
So, we are stuck! I will keep on writing and sending, and you will keep on receiving (unless you unsubscribe after receiving this narcissistic litany). The word (in this form) will still go out with the prayer it will fall on "good soil and produce grain, some hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty." (Matthew 13.8)
Now, for those of you who are interested in statistics, my friend Shane tells me that the average number of hits on a Thursday's Thirst that has been posted on the STL webpage for at least a year, is 8,000! There generally are around 400 in the first week. And these statistics do not include those who read it through Facebook or Twitter ... or you who receive it directly at 8:15 a.m.
The bottom line for us all ... in addition to the fact that our lives are always filled beyond overflowing with the goodness of our God ... is that we are receiving this bounty from Jesus that we might share it with others ... or, as God's instruction comes to me regarding Thursday's Thirst (and us all in the living of our lives), "Preach the word; be ready in season and out of season." (2 Timothy 4.2)
"Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits (even when I forget my laptop), who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases. who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy, who satisfies you with good so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's." (Psalm 103.2-5)