The late, great Johnny Cash was a living case study in the frailty and weakness of man. As a young man he had many vices and troubles, including alcohol, drugs and illicit sex, yet he still had God's gift for music and even in his troubled days his music became very popular. But in the later 1960's when his world was crashing down around him, something would happen that must have been ordained by God for him. For not long before that happened, Johnny was arrested for trying to smuggle amphetamines into the United States and even with starting a large forest fire in California by being careless. Yet, n 1968 when he met the late June Carter, herself a recognized music personality, Cupid's arrow made a direct hit and June Carter and hes love for him would serve him well to clean up his life and return to his love for God.
June was no angel either, and her love for Johnny began while she was still married, but after leaving her husband for Johnny, the devotion and love she showed for the troubled recording artist showed its impact quickly. Johnny cleaned up and dried out, and even though he would have missteps along the way, his recognition of the God his devout Pentecostal mother had taught him about came back into his life front. And June, herself also a woman who had been taught as a child about the love of God, reinforced his strength and made him better while her faith returned as well. It was truly a love story made for Nashville and the two stayed devoted for many years until they died a mere four months apart, with June's death first. Many friends said that Johnny saw no reason for living after his June was gone. And Johnny and June will be remembered for the wonderful Christian singing that they so added to their music in later years.
While the words to the song are not a description of Johnny's actual life, it is clear that they almost could have been in many ways. And had he not fallen in love with his June, perhaps he would have found himself always in the condition of the poor, broken man in the song. So, I would hope that readers would take a moment and read and ponder the lyrics which are included below, for I believe they make clear how even a poor, broken man can find redemption in what the song portrays. That is my message for this Sunday, my friends and readers, and I hope it conveys to youh why always around us is evidence of God and his love and grace and why we need to always look for that evidence each and every day. No matter how distraught, lonely or fearful we might be, God is always there for us if we just reach out and ask for His help. And with that, I hope each and every one of you has a most blessed Lord's Day. Enjoy.
Well, I woke up Sunday morning with no way to hold my head that didn't hurt. And the beer I had for breakfast wasn't bad, So I had one more for dessert. Then I fumbled in my closet through my clothes And found my cleanest dirty shirt. Then I washed my face and combed my hair and stumbled down the stairs to meet the day.
I'd smoked my mind the night before with cigarettes and songs I'd been picking. But I lit my first and watched a small kid playing with a can that he was kicking. Then I walked across the street and caught the Sunday smell of someone frying chicken. And Lord, it took me back to something that I'd lost somewhere, somehow along the way.
On a Sunday morning sidewalk, I'm wishing, Lord, that I was stoned. 'Cause there's something in a Sunday that makes a body feel alone. And there's nothing short a' dying that's half as lonesome as the sound of the sleeping city sidewalk and Sunday morning coming down.
In the park I saw a daddy with a laughing little girl that he was swinging. And I stopped beside a Sunday school and listened to the songs they were singing. Then I headed down the street, and somewhere far away a lonely bell was ringing, and it echoed through the canyon like the disappearing dreams of yesterday.
On a Sunday morning sidewalk, I'm wishing, Lord, that I was stoned. 'Cause there's something in a Sunday that makes a body feel alone. And there's nothing short a' dying that's half as lonesome as the sound Of the sleeping city sidewalk and Sunday morning coming down.