Friday, October 21, 2011

A Visit from John Michael Talbot

Speaker and musician John Michael Talbot came to our church this week!

This was super exciting for our parish, as it’s been in the works for about two years. I’m so happy I was able to attend—though I had trouble finding a seat! (Come on, people, this is a church. Do NOT lay your coats across the pews to save seats for those coming later!! Thank you to my choir family for letting me slip in with some of them!)

I digress. (In other words, I'm done with the hypocritical whining!)

Once I was squished in comfortably seated, the rest of the evening proved to be full of deep wisdom and instruction, delightful humor, and stirring music. If you haven’t heard of JMT, you can check out his website here.

I wanted to share with you a beautiful analogy he gave on the Christian life. He reminded us that being a Christian doesn’t mean we no longer have the suffering and trials of this life—but that now we have hope and meaning through them because of our God and Savior.

JMT compared the Christian life and transformation to wheat being made into bread. I’ll break it down for you (pun slightly intended!) as he did…

We (as you guessed) are the wheat. Jesus wants to transform us into bread (something better). But naturally, it’s quite a process.

First, you are cut down. Ouch for my pride!

Then into the thresher we go. Stripping away the stalks from the grain.

Sometimes we’re up in the air in life—not sure where we’re going. Like when wheat is winnowed and tossed into the air for the chaff to be blown away. Not fun, my friends. But keep that finished product in mind!

Ooh, and this next one: grinding the wheat. Whew! Are we done yet?

No, for there’s the kneading. Life pushes us on all sides. We’re beaten down.

But ah! We rise after that. Life is going great! Up, up, up we go…

Only to be punched down! (I wish you could have heard and seen him tell this!)

We’re almost done…but you know the last step…

The oven. It’s hot in there! But the heat is transforming.

Finally, a beautiful loaf of bread that will be nourishing to others is brought forth from it all.

(My brief summary was much less profound and interesting than his storytelling, but you get the idea.)

What a blessing to have this unique and talented man speak, sing, and minister to us. I bought a book by him called Simplicity and look forward to gleaning from that as well. (I just hope it doesn't make me clean out my closet! I love am very fond of my clothes! haha! Have a great weekend, all!)

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