Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: GATHERING (07/14/16)
TITLE: Letter to the Wildcats
By Jody Day
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I couldn't help but see all those bright young faces in ’75, who had their whole lives ahead of them. Somebody should have told us to invest in computer technologies, and that LPs would go away, but then come back. We might have believed that much, but I don't think we'd have believed the world that we have now.
Looking around the room at the reunion, I thought about how we are the generation that survived without wearing seatbelts and enjoyed unsupervised play. In fact, play dates did not include parents. “Stranger Danger” had not yet become a thing, and we licked the raw egg infused cake batter bowl. Toys did not have as many safety regulations (lead paint), and we rode in the back of pick-up trucks. Second-hand smoke was everywhere. Sure, our generation had enough "drugs, sex, and rock-n-roll" to muddy up our Andy Griffith/Sunday School childhoods, but we made it through high school just the same, without a computer or a cell phone. Bless our 8-track playing, American Bandstand watching, bell-bottom wearing hearts!
Remember the Veterans Day assemblies? I'll never forget old Mr. Prue Benson and his barrel-chested rendition of *God Bless America. Mrs. Wadenpfuhl's choir would then sing *Let There Be Peace On Earth. Could any of us imagine that 40 years later there would still be no peace? That political corruption would be at an all-time high? That pure evil would attack us on our own soil?
Does anyone remember that newspaper clipping that Mrs. Hattie Stovall read to us in Senior English? Something about Communist Rules for Revolution, it resurfaced on the internet recently. I don't know about the validity of it, but it sure seems like somebody has been following those rules. Anyway, that's just my opinion.
What I really wanted to say was how very proud I am of all of you. I don't know all the paths that lead us to that get-together, but I loved hearing about your families. One thing we have in common is that our grandchildren are the best, right? Everyone's eyes just shone as they talked about their families. I loved how there was no sense of competition, but a true appreciation for everyone just like we are.
What a shock to lose Paul within weeks after our gathering, and then Gene, and Sheila just lost her husband. There may already be others I haven't heard about. I'm glad that social media keeps us connected and that we pray for each other. Those losses emphasize how important it is to express our love while we can.
So here goes: Class of '75, I love you. Thanks for folding me into the mix as a sophomore. Even though I didn't grow up with you guys, I never felt like an outsider. My only regret is that I didn't share my faith more while I was young. I want you to know, if you don't already, (and I think most of you do) that Jesus Christ loves us more than we can fathom. He paid for our sins on the Cross with His very life. We only have to repent from our sins, and ask His forgiveness. He takes up residence in our hearts, and we'll be with Him forever. It's never, never too late.
If you went to church with Mr. Prue, then you've heard his most frequent solo, *His Eye is On the Sparrow. It used to tickle me the way he spit out the word spa-rooooww, almost like a sling-shot to said bird. I loved the last part, though.
I sing because I'm happy, I sing because I'm free. His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.
I don't know how "happy" we all are, but we are still free Americans, and can be free in Christ. The Father still watches over us. Let's get together again, soon. Go Wildcats!
*Let There Be Peace on Earth by Jill Jackson Miller, 1955, Various Publishers
*God Bless America by Irving Berlin, 1918, Hal Leonard Publishing
*His Eye is on the Sparrow by Civilla Martin and Charles Gabriel, 1905, Public Domain
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