About Impact

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

When Frogs Sing

The St. Joe river from one of my recent hikes.
At the end of a rough day I decided to go hiking and spend some time listening to God. I’m so glad I did because it was an insightful walk.

As I was walking along a marshy area, the tree frogs and bullfrogs were croaking incredibly loud. It was as if they were croaking as loud as they could because they didn’t know when they would be able to tomorrow. It was a beautiful and powerful song they were singing. I stopped to take it all in and noticed after a few minutes the birds had joined the singing.  

I started imagining what the lyrics to their songs might be. I started thinking about how all of creation proclaims the glory of God. These frogs and birds were doing that with such gusto. I wondered if my life was proclaiming the glory of God with the same intensity and intentionality that the birds were singing.

I looked around to take in the scenery and I noticed how bare the trees were. None of them had started budding. There were no signs of new growth anywhere in the underbrush. Everything I saw in the woods seemed to be lifeless, but man those frogs and birds were singing strong.

I thought about the faithful men who finished running their races this year and the challenges the last few months had brought. There is a song ringing out even in the midst of brokenness, a song of hope. That is the song that I want to sing.

“Let heaven fill your thoughts. Do not think only about things down here on earth.” Colossians 3:2

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Losing a Legend

Keats Wood
 This morning I’m in Lansing, MI at the Michigan Statewide Teen Convention thinking about my friends and family in my hometown that are gathering to celebrate the life of Keats Wood. Many in Vestaburg call him a legend and I would agree.

Keats served in many roles at the school, but I remember Keats more from church. Keats taught our 4th-6th grade Sunday School Class. I remember him taking the stories we had heard many times before and bringing them to life. He taught us how to read Scripture as more than just stories.  

In more recent years, I learned how great Keats was at encouraging others. Every Sunday I was home while I was teaching school, Keats always asked how things were in my classroom. He would ask me about how many knives I had pulled off kids that semester, how many students had passed the last playing test, or if I had fallen in love with teaching yet? Those conversations always ended with Keats telling me he was confident I was a good teacher and that I could make it to the end of the year.

When I started working as a campus minister, Keats continued to encourage me and always asked about our Notre Dame students. He was a huge Michigan State fan and I can’t think of one trip home where we didn’t discuss college sports and how much college life has changed over the years.

This year, my home church has lost several men who were great examples of faith to me. Keats was one of them. The legacy he leaves behind forces me to question the legacy I’m leaving behind. Am I helping those around me take steps towards Christ? Keats did, and I’m grateful.