A unique visitor gives a unique gift to Thorncrown Chapel
By Jim Reed
He that giveth, let him do it with simplicity. Romans 12:8
The old man moved toward me on the chapel trail. He was white-haired, lean and spry, and perhaps 75 or 80 years old. “This your dream?” he asked. “Yes,” I answered. “With God’s help it was my idea.” “Dreams become reality if you don’t quit,” he said. “If you love something enough, it releases its secrets. I’m a dreamer myself,” he continued. “When I was a young man, I had a pretty girl that I cared for very much. She told me I would never be anything but an idle dreamer. I lost her, and it hurt me deeply. I’m making something out of myself now,” he said. “I’m going to be somebody. I’ll do it yet. I’ve been going to school at night. I’ll do it. I’ll be somebody,” he repeated as he turned and started toward the truck that he said was his only home.
Soon I saw him coming back up the trail carrying a blue-green vase. “Can I give this to the chapel?” he asked. “The chapel makes me feel something that’s not ordinary. Made the vase myself,” he said. “Made it from clay and I made the dye too, and it matches the cloth in the chapel. Can I please give it to the chapel? Will you take it?”
I stood on the trail examining the vase. He had made it all, even the dye, all with his own hands, and he wanted to give it to the church. I turned, and he was gone. I moved quickly toward the parking lot as I had something to say to him. Only a trail of dust lingered where his truck-home had been. Hey, Old Man, if you can hear me out there --- you’re somebody --- YOU ARE REALLY SOMEBODY!!!
Thank you, God, for the humble folks that you send our way. Surely they must be your heroes.
James Reed was the founder of Thorncrown Chapel.