Long Past Prime
When you think you have nothing left to give
One of the happiest memories I have from this past Easter was the chance to see Judy and Ralph's daughter, Katie, coming into her prime. I remember the first year she came with her violin and played for us. We listened politely as this gangly youth scratched through a song or two. "Pretty good," I remember thinking. "Even better," I thought the second year. By this past year, however, we all just sat in amazement as this lovely young woman—now a student at Julliard—brought music out of that fiddle that had to make the angels smile.
Is there anything so beautiful as someone really using their gifts in the prime of their life? Did you ever get down to the United Center to see Michael Jordan play basketball at the apex of his career? Did you ever see Meryl Streep act or Gene Kelly dance? Were you ever there to hear Art DeKruyter preach or Ella Fitzgerald sing the blues? Will there come a day when people are saying things like this about you and me?
If we are patient, if we keep learning from others and working away at our craft, our time will come. You may not make a magazine cover, but you're going to come to a point of convergence when you'll be capable of things that seem utterly out of your reach today. Some of you are there right now and don't even know it. You're at a point in your career or your family life when you are performing unconsciously well. You are probably aware of plenty of flaws in your game. The great ones always are. But one day, you're going to look back at these days right now and say, "Wow, I was in my prime."
I can remember the night I scored 25 points to win a playoff game against a 6' 10" guy that once played for the Boston Celtics. But I can also remember the day a few years ...
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Dan Meyer is pastor of Christ Church of Oak Brook in Oak Brook, Illinois.