The Wine of Astonishment

Do you ever find that your scriptures fall open to a verse at the moment you needed to read it? That happened to me today.

I took a short break at work and my little pocket New Testament opened to the Psalms, which, together with Proverbs, is published in the back of the book. The typeface is small, but I can still read it without my glasses. I read the first two verses of a psalm, and then read this:

“Thou hast shewed thy people hard things: thou hast made us to drink the wine of astonishment.” —Psalms 60:3

To me, those 17 words sum up the last year of my life. An alternate Hebrew translation of astonishment is staggering. To say the least, aside from the years that my wife was sick, this last year has been one of the most staggering of my life.

But I’d rather not focus on the past. That’s why they call it the past, says Dave Ramsey, because its the past. So instead of dredging up a catalog of affliction, let me just summarize the last 12 months: injury, illness, and financial concerns have been a constant companion.

Now most of the bishops I have known over the years have been very, very blessed men. As they have served and sacrificed, it seems that a convoy of dump trunks, loaded with temporal blessings, have emptied loot in their front yards.

This has not been our lot. On the contrary, while our blessings have been just as constant and abundant, they have been of a less visible, less obvious kind, though no less appreciated.

I’ll tell you all about our blessings in a future post.

One thought on “The Wine of Astonishment

  1. Anonymous July 8, 2008 / 12:32 pm

    We are grateful that you have elected to serve us in the midst of affliction. You have been a great influence on our lives.


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