For all the people that have asked about my friend Colin (Neil posted about him recently - he is the biker in the south side that was attacked, stabbed, had his throat slit, and left for dead).
Well, after that kind of intro, I'm happy to announce that he is doing amazingly well!! He is still a bit weak (after losing 1/2 his blood), but he's alive and he's home and he's on the mend.
More than that, he spoke at our church this last sunday...
I wouldn't normally promote something so strongly, but this message is well worth a listen. (seriously friends, its good. have a listen)
I must say that I'm not surprised at all by his talk. This grace and love he shares now is something he has shown before. He and his wife Carina are the kind of people who are able to take off the heaviness of their situation. While so many wear their tragedies like cloaks, these two are able to shed the things that befall them - then remarkably look at the bright side of things.
Last year, when their house burned down (a huge thing), and when city officials wouldn't return phone calls about stuff like zoning (a small thing), they just shrugged off any justifiable anger or the "woah is me's" that I, quite honestly, felt could have merit.
They would actually walk into our apartment (where they stayed for a bit) covered in ash from working on their home and they would smile and chat, then go to wash off all that grime. Sitting with us in the living room, all clean and fresh, they would amaze me by counting the things in life they could celebrate.
So again, its no surprise that now in the face of violence and malice, Colin and Carina can discard those heavy cloaks of fear and anger and revenge and dispair and hurt and on and on - its their nature to stand tall, to find lightness. They've done it both the great things and the small things.
This reminds me of the parable of the ten servants in Luke 19 - when Jesus ultimately says "those who use well what they've been given, even more will be given." Who you are when it matters little is who you'll be when it matters greatly.
There's a number of things that make this talk so very very encouraging for me to hear. (I mean it, I'm just going to keep posting this same link and telling you to go hear him speak!)...
- First and foremost, I was so elated to listen to the (very alive) voice of my friend.
- But I'm also considering how I will emerge from these years of pain. All this time, the hurt I've carried has been physical and emotional. If I emerge pain free, as I hope, I'll have to shed all the years of heaviness too - I'm so inspired by Colin and Carina for how they continue to move ahead in the good things, leaving in the past what has passed.
- Finally, this talk resonates because I know how much his message can be applied to the small things in life... traffic, comcast billing, neighbors with a weedwacker before 8 am, etc. It sounds overly simple to say but why can't anger and annoyance at those things be replaced with grace and kindness and the old golden rule.
If nothing else, thank you dear Colin and Carina, for the beautiful example.