Why me, Lord?

This article was written back in February, so it is a little out of date now, but the sentiment is the same.

March 2nd was my wedding anniversary. 2021 made 25 blessed years that Theresa and I have been married. We marked the day with a quiet, private celebration with me playing chef to thank her for putting up with me all this time.

March is when I joined the Moose eleven years ago. March 1st was the date of the 14th Annual Moosehaven Golf Tournament fund raiser. The Golf Tournament tradition continues unbroken albeit with some changes, still we are thankful to be able to get together and for the support we receive. March 1st was also the anniversary of the first publicly reported cases of the COVID 19 virus in Florida. One year ago, on March 15th Moosehaven closed the campus to reduce the risk of our residents contracting the virus.

During the past year many felt as if we were transported to the Land of Uz to sit in the dust with Job and cry out the equivalent of, “Why me Lord.” In their minds, the past 12 months bore a resemblance to the trials of Job with perceived loss and deprivation. Why do we have a Pandemic virus? Why can’t it be like it was? Why now? Why us?
It would take much more than a page and many quotations from people smarter than I to answer the age old question of, “Why me Lord.” However, I can say that the past year, just like the month of March, contained both trials and blessings.

Remember the story of Job isn’t just about the trials of life; it also highlights the blessings received and their source. Just to be clear my wedding day falls under blessings not trials; I don’t want to be in trouble if Theresa reads this.
Some of you know that song writers and poets express things in a way that makes sense to me. In this case Kris Kristofferson wrote a song in the 1970’s that captures what I want to say. Here are the lyrics of Why Me Lord:

Why me Lord, what have I ever done
To deserve even one
Of the pleasures I’ve known
Tell me Lord, what did I ever do
That was worth loving you
Or the kindness you’ve shown.
Lord help me Jesus, I’ve wasted it so
Help me Jesus I know what I am
Now that I know that I’ve needed you so
Help me Jesus, my souls in your hands.
Tell me Lord, if you think there’s a way
I can try to repay
All I’ve taken from you
Maybe Lord, I can show someone else
What I’ve been through myself
On my way back to you.
Lord help me Jesus, I’ve wasted it so
Help me Jesus I know what I am
Now that I know that I’ve needed you so
Help me Jesus, my souls in your hands

In the song the question of “why me Lord” is flipped on its head. Instead of what did I do to have bad things happen to me (be punished even) the song focuses on what did I do to receive so many blessings and what can I give back. It is reminiscent of the saying: Grace is when God gives us good things we don’t deserve.

If March of 2020 marked the beginning of a year of change that felt like punishment, maybe March of 2021 can be the beginning of a year of thankfulness as we begin to change back in the other direction.

Sorry, I don’t have a good joke to go along with this story (or even a bad one) but if you like 1970’s country music, Google Why Me Lord and give it a listen. It is worth the time.

Bill Tippins