This is the picture of a grizzled old cowboy with a serious looking scowl on his face. It is what I noticed first about the mug. And no, he ain’t me. But what is on the back side of this mug that the picture so well illustrates?
The message is in rather rough language but that’s the way he is. It’s the way of talking among most old fashioned cowboys that I know and love to hang out around. Kinda like rough-cut fishermen that my Lord loved to be with. You never have to wonder what a man like him means when he turns those piercing eyes on you and utters a serious comment on any subject. What I’ve read about the big fisherman, the one Jesus called “Rock”, I’m pretty sure he may have expressed the same sentiments after trying to figure out what in the world was going on in the garden that night. And for the 3 or 4 days following. Nothing new. It is pretty much the way he and the others had lived since quitting the fishing business and giving up the tax collector’s job.
Jesus knew exactly what was happening and what was coming next. Not just that night but all the time. Yet Rock and the boys were constantly amazed at this carpenter turned Circuit Ridin’ preacher from Nazareth they had taken up with. Have you been like me and Rock? “Lord, I know this didn’t catch you by surprise, but why didn’t You warn me what to expect?”
Rocky and I are not the only ones with a question like this. I suspect that every servant of our Lord feels like this more often than we want to admit. And missionaries especially! (But ask your pastor as well!) We joke about the rigid rule in ministry as “Be Flexible”. But living by that rule often challenges us to the sole’s of our cowboy boots.
But truthfully, I’m glad “they” didn’t tell me. The old saying that “If I’d have known then….”, you know the rest of that one, is not my song. And to be as honest as an old cowboy with nothing to hide and no regrets, I would not change it for the world. Living by faith and trusting a God Who sees the end from the beginning is the most exciting life a person could ask for! Thank You, Lord, for the privileged ride.