On this Thankful Thursday, I am thankful for the gifts that Father Jimmy Carter brings to my life. At a very difficult time in my life I was invited to train the lectors at Christ Our King Catholic Church. I was deeply honored by their gracious invitation, but deeply apprehensive because being a life-long Baptist I didn’t want to do anything inappropriate. I was warmly welcomed by everyone and Father Carter assured that he would give me all the guidance that I needed. Of course, I was amused that a catholic church had a priest named Jimmy Carter. We had a wonderful time together. The time I spent there was one of the highlights of my religious experience. Father Carter gently provided all the guidance I needed. At the conclusion he assured me that I had not done or said anything that would not be appropriate in any church. The training manual they used had the best description ever. “The lector should be a window through which the parishioner can see God.” In other words, if the reader is too perfect, the focus will be on how well the reader did. If the reading is poorly done then that will be the focus. The reader should not be the focus. As is true in most situations, the teacher learned more than the students. Thank you, Msgr. Carter for adding another dimension to my understanding of other Christian traditions. The experience has deeply enriched my life.

            Thankful Thursday is a day set aside to recognize the importance of someone to our lives and to let her or him know of our gratitude. Develop an attitude of gratitude. Say Something Nice; Be a Lifter. You will be glad that you did.

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