Chappy’s corner “It’s a sure thing!”

A man goes to the racetrack to watch the horses run. Before the first race starts he sees a priest go out and make the sign of the cross in front of horse number four. The race starts and horse number four wins.  Before the second race the priest makes the sign of the cross in front of horse number seven and the horse wins.  So before the third race the man watches closely and sees the priest make the sign of the cross in front of horse number three and so he places a bet on that horse. Horse number three wins and the man makes some money. For all the races the man watches the priest and bets on whatever horse he makes the sign of the cross.  When the last race is about to start, the priest makes the sign of the cross on horse number six and the man places all he has won plus a couple hundred dollars more on horse  number six to win. The race starts and horse number six goes two feet and drops dead. The man is outrage and finds the priest and demands why the horse dropped dead. The priest replies, “Are you a Protestant?” The man replies, “Yeah, I’m Lutheran so what about it?” the Priest replies, “That’s the problem with you Protestants. You don’t know the difference between a blessing and the last rites.”

That fellow thought he had a sure thing!  But he didn’t, and he is not alone.  Over the years I’ve met many folks who have put all their trust in some sure deal, only to find themselves swindled by some con artist or some crooked individuals. Today there are many who are out to scam us.  We have warnings, but many folks, especially elderly folks are getting taken by such thieves.  It’s sad when that happens.  But then we need to remember that in life there are very few things we can be sure of.   Benjamin Franklin is credited with saying “There are only two things certain in life:  Death and Taxes.”  We are now in the tax season and many folks are trying to figure out how to reduce the amount they owe. Others are being promised that they can get their “money back” if they just use the right tax preparer.

The truth is Death can’t be reduced. We can take precautions and live a healthy lifestyle to hopefully live longer, but we will die. If not by accident or act of violence, then old age will come and our life will be over.  As I get older I’m reminded of that sobering fact every time I hear of someone my age or younger who has died.  Death exists, but once death strikes what then?

Many folks think there is no hope after death, but as a Christian I disagree. I believe that there is life after death, and with the right preparer we can look forward to a great life after death.   For me and others of my faith, our preparer is Jesus who said, “God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but has everlasting life.”  Jesus gives us a promise and backs it up by his own suffering, death and resurrection.  He went through all of that to save us. 

Trusting in Jesus means there is a life after death. That’s what Jesus offers, and personally I think that’s a good deal.  Others might not agree, maybe they think there is some better deal out there.  But what’s great about Jesus offer is that He is the only one I know that loved us enough to suffer all, die and then to rise again.  Who else can make such an offer?  I can only think of one individual and his name is Jesus!

That’s just my thoughts from this SE Corner of South Dakota!

CH (COL) David Gunderson

State Chaplain for SDARNG