Bringing a spiritual perspective to daily life
I've never known Remmy to be anything but calmly certain of God's goodness. My friendship with this wonderful Jamaican man goes back over 20 years, and I well remember the first time he helped us with our yard work.
It was a rainy day, and I was complaining about its dreariness. He looked at me and said in gentle rebuke, "Who woke you up this morning? God did! And it's God's day, and we will bless it." I was to find out that these were not just words of positive thinking from my deeply Christian friend. He lives this conviction, this simple trust in God's control every day, and there is no question that his faith permeates his experience.
For example, I've never seen him ill or known him to miss a day of work for anything except something he has planned. He never complains about anything. He's always whistling or singing while he works, and he expresses untiring gratitude for everything and everyone.
Now, well over the three score and ten mark, he works as vigorously and actively as he did 20 years ago. He attends church faithfully and loves to tell me about how his granddaughter loves going to these services with him.
He told me once that his church had been burned down and how the congregation had rallied and rebuilt an even better building. They refused to be discouraged or resentful, because they were "leaning on the Lord."
It's not that Remmy hasn't had hard things to face a divorce, the unplanned pregnancy of his daughter, paying off a mortgage, making ends meet financially, and the indignity of being treated as a second-class citizen at times because of his race and lack of education. But through it all he turns to one singular source for strength and assurance God.
When I think of Remmy, I think of these words from a hymn:
In simple trust like theirs who heard,
Beside the Syrian sea,
The gracious calling of the Lord,