Today I awoke to a gray and dreary Sunday, something that is not the norm here in sunny Florida. As I went out to feed the horses, the weather made me think of Sunday Morning Coming Down, one of my favorites from the late Johnny Cash.
Now I know I date myself with this and for those of you who don't appreciate country music, you may wonder what I am talking about. Well, this song, recorded by a man who had his share of personal demons in his life, really brings front and center the hopelessness and sadness of people who don't know our Lord.
The story tells of a man waking up Sunday morning with a severe hangover who has a breakfast of a beer and, as the song goes, "with one more for dessert". Walking down the sidewalk and feeling listless and blue, he hears Sunday school children singing in a nearby church and he is filled with loneliness. And I especially recall the key line from the song when Johnny sings "On a Sunday morning sidewalk, Lord I wish that I was stoned". He was having trouble coming to grips with himself and his meaningless life.
Having been wild and rambunctious as a young man, Johnny Cash clearly was sending us a message based on his own experiences. As a young man he had some serious problems with his own personal sin. He drank heavily and lived for the moment. He had been successful with his music beyond his wildest dreams and he just lived for the moment, consequences be damned.
But as he became wiser with age he changed dramatically and devoted his singing to sending a message of hope to those who lived in the manner he had lived earlier. He had a particular interest in those incarcerated in prison who now sought to change their lives.
Most of us have been through a similar stage of life where riches and pleasure meant everyting; we didn't have time to face the truth and seek salvation. It was just easier to hide from God in booze, sex, or other sinful actions for instant gratification. And like this great singer, hopefully we have gone from "running with the dogs" to a gentler, kinder self who can take the time to hold and hug a precious little kitten.
Folks, wherever you stand in life, whatever you have done or are thinking about doing, Jesus Christ and the Father have a home awaiting you. All they ask is that you believe and commit to a Him. That's it, and it sounds easy. But, remember, that old fallen angel is always standing near to try and convince you that his offer of riches, easy living, and pleasures of this world is what you really want. All you have to do is turn your back on the true God, and give your soul to the evil one.
On this Sunday Morning Coming Down just tell Satan NO. You're not interested in what's easy, you're interested in what's right and good and you will not sacrifice a real future for a false one. Stand with God and accept His gift of eternal life instead. It takes faith, love and constant vigilance, but it offers riches and pleasures beyond anything in our wildest dreams.
God bless you all and have a wonderful Sunday. Remember to keep your Lord's Day holy.