This afternoon I distill the silence around me as I reflect on a senior citizen celebration at the Oakwood University Church on the campus of Oakwood University on Saturday, July 25, 2015. That Saturday was, for me, one of those “Good by @ Hello” moments.
Metaphorically speaking, a “Good-by @ Hello” moment is a flash in time when God provides treasured lessons affirming the importance of knowing when he is actively transitioning a life, i.e., taking it to “another level.” That is what the sermon spoken by Dr. Calvin Rock, a former president of Oakwood University, did for me during senior citizen’s day. The sermon summoned a call to “step out of [self imposed] silence” into a life of continued God- directed purpose. On that July day, I walked from the church meditating prayerfully upon two lessons—one beckoning a nod Good-by; the other calling on me to affirm Hello.
Lesson One: A Simple Good-by Prayer
Thanks for the Good-by lesson learned on July 25th. God, many of the people in the audience were seasoned citizens. Some have served over ninety years in your vineyard. Speak to me Father about the contributions you yearn for me to make in your vineyard. Let me follow in the tradition of those represented in the church’s sanctuary who have served. I thank you for their example. I hope I work to be an example like the petite woman who prayed a soulfully heart rendering prayer.
Lesson Two: A Simple Hello Prayer
This afternoon I am reminded of the speaker for senior citizen’s day. Lord, did you tell him to remind the folks sitting in the pew of the gracious gift of life. Indeed Lord, as long as You gift a human with life, he or she is called to provide service. In addition, a senior citizen– be he (or she) sixty or beyond cannot be “stuck in silence.” Aging is a blessing. Oh Lord, let me “step out of silence” and use my voice in the way you envision.
This afternoon, as I rock to the sound of the ticking clock clicking meticulously to the distant sound of children playing poolside Marco Polo, there is a novel beat in my feet. The stillness of silence is no longer muted. Its harvest is a Good-by @ Hello moment. May you experience a Good-by @ Hello moment in your life. It will inspire you!