An egg was stolen from an eagle’s nest high on the cliff and incubated beneath a chicken. The odd hatchling didn’t walk as well as the other chicks and obviously wasn’t one of them, but learned to fit in with the others, pecking about the barnyard for insects, sprouts, and scraps. Nights were spent sitting on a roost lined up with all the other birds just awaiting the sunrise so that they could resume their life of pecking in the dirt. This fledgling outgrew the other birds and knew that it didn’t belong, but it knew nothing better and so became comfortable in the dirt of the barnyard until one day…
It was obvious even to a neophyte with no knowledge of mechanics that the white smoke billowing out of the tailpipe of the car wasn’t a good thing. The mechanic made his preliminary diagnosis in a matter of seconds when he pulled the dipstick out of the engine and showed me the white frothy mixture on the dipstick that meant absolutely nothing to me. (Alright, so I knew that it was supposed to be black — give me a little credit — I did check and change my own oil regularly.)
All the years I played competitive football I never scored. Don't get me wrong, I was a good player. In fact, I was an excellent player on an outstanding team in a tough division. But I never scored. I was well conditioned; I worked hard; I gave one hundred percent; I never quit; I went at it as hard as I could; but I never scored. I admit that without any shame. I have no feelings of inadequacy resulting from that acknowledgment. I'm not kicking myself over it, nor did anyone else when I was playing. None of my teammates ever mocked me because of it. None of my coaches ever criticized me for having failed to score.
“Daddy, if the speed limit is 65, why do they make cars that run 120?” There was no accusation in the innocent voice of my twelve year old daughter as she asked that question, for I was very careful not to drive excessively fast with my children in the car — unlike how I drove sometimes when alone on the open road — for I truly love speed.
Ranching and farming were a constant part of the first four decades of my life. My most profound life lessons were learned from livestock, wildlife and nature. Here I “heard” God speaking to us through His creation. And it was in that natural world that my faith in God was cemented; my certainty of His faithfulness being as sure as the rising of the sun every morning. So it was to that natural world that my mind turned a short time back as I faced one of life’s storms.
It used to be one of my regular rituals, but it had been a while since I had been to the parks with a bag of burgers, so when the urge hit me today it was with a pleasant joy that I jumped in my truck and headed into the inner city where most of the homeless congregate. I drove those miles with the songs on a Darlene Zschech CD lifting and inspiring my heart as we praised God together. Downtown, I pulled through a Burger King drive thru’ and got the usual response that follows my ordering 30 Whoppers, “Could you pull forward please?” where the manager steps to the window, looks me over and asks, “Did you say 30 Whoppers???”
Jack was raised in a Christian home where he spent his youth preparing to preach God’s word. First published at thirteen, writing and speaking became Jack’s passions. Whether through newspaper columns, magazine articles, radio broadcasts or public speaking engagements, Jack continues to share his heart with his readers. His life’s motto: To Know God, and To Show Him To Others.