Sadness and Joy

Friday, April 29, 2011
It's a funny old world, really.

In one day, I can experience sadness and joy because of the events in the lives of people I have never met. People who have been part of my life,  but whom I've never come into contact with personally.
Today Prince William gets married. I watched his parents get married when I was 10 years old. I remember when he was born. He even took his first steps in my country. I feel like I've known him all my life, and now I'm going to his wedding (via tv satellite). That watching him get married is like watching a familiar friend get married. And yet, I am a stranger. Never met him. Never even laid eyes on him. Yet, as a member of the British Commonwealth, I am proud to be loyal to my (future) king as God commands.
Prince William feels like he's part of the family.

And on the same day, in another part of the world, someone else who has been a great influence in my life, has died.

I was thinking on all of this today as we heard late last night that much-loved David Wilkerson, an influential christian leader and author died tragically in a car accident in Texas yesterday.
I have never met him or known him personally, and yet I have known him all my life.

In 1973 he wrote The Vision, a book my parents had in their bookcase, and one that captivated me from an early age. In fact, I have it right now on the dresser by my bed.
When I struggled with the peer pressure of drinking alcohol, his book, Sipping Saints, decided me against it once and for all.
When I was in fifth form, his book, The Cross and the Switchblade became part of our School Certificate syllabus (and I didn't go to a christian school). It provoked deep discussions with my non-christian friends.
When we were going through our difficult years with our son's epilepsy and the uncertainty and worry of that, along with other matters, we took weekly encouragement from his online sermons. Such a wise, God-fearing man whose faith was grounded in God's Word. More than any other person on this Earth, I trust his interpretations of the Scriptures. He is on my list of Top 5 influential people in my life, and his wisdom and counsel will be greatly missed.

So, today - a significant day in my life because of a loss on one side, and the thrill of a royal wedding on the other. It is a funny old world when two people I don't know, and who don't know me can impact my life in such a way.


bettyl said...

What a sad day that we lost David Wilkerson. I did book reports in school on his book, but I doubt most schools will allow that now.

Julze said...

I was saddened to her about David Wilkinson's passing. I was very inspired by "the cross and the switchblade" as a teen. Our loss is heavens gain.

Cate said...

I was sad to hear of David's passing too. Very much the end of an era.

call*me*kate said...

I totally understand - there are a few people that have left their mark on my life but whom I'll never meet. I'm sorry to hear about Mr. Wilkerson - I have heard of him. I never wanted to read "The Cross and the Switchblade" but always saw it at the library. I think the book either scared me or didn't interest me. Perhaps I should reconsider. But, yes, let's rejoice with Prince William and his beautiful bride! A new beginning for a couple we all want to have a happy, long life together. I do not have TV but I listen to the BBC on the radio and got some late night info after the wedding. Then the newspapers and some internet searching gave me more of the wedding - I really wanted to see her dress! I have not had much time on the computer this weekend but I plan to search a bit more for wedding info. It's not something that happens every day, right?

Naturally Carol said...

The Cross and the Switchblade was the second book I ever read when I was a new Christian, it impacted my life in a big way, as it did many others. It is hard to believe that David Wilkinson is not alive and that he died in such a horrible way. Very sad.

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