For Jesus knew from the first who were the ones that did not believe, and who was the one that would betray him. (John 6:64 NRSV)
A man named Jim Stovall wrote a book titled, YOU DON'T HAVE TO BE BLIND TO SEE. Jim was just a boy when a condition called juvenile macular degeneration began to steal away his eyesight. By the time he reached adulthood, Jim was totally blind. In college, Jim would stop and visit with the dorm maintenance man, Jimmy Carter--no relation to our former president.

Jimmy Carter, the maintenance man, took great pride in his work. He often asked Jim, "Are you squared away?" By that he meant, "Are you giving it your best effort?"

One day, Jimmy Carter surprised Jim by inviting him into his supply room. The walls were plastered with photos of past successful students. Then, he remarked to Jim, "They were no better or worse than you. They just got themselves squared away."

Jim Stovall went on to excel in college, graduating with highest honors. He became a successful stockbroker, then started his own television network. Today, Jim's network is carried by thousands of cable stations all over the world. It has also won an Emmy, in addition to other awards and honors. And Jim travels the country as a successful motivational speaker.

Years after he graduated from college, Jim Stovall made a visit to a local nursing home, where he ran into his old friend Jimmy Carter. They talked for a while, and then the nurse took the former maintenance man back to his room. But as she turned to go, she mentioned to Jim, "You made it onto his wall." With all the awards and honors and success that Jim Stovall has earned, he reports that nothing else compares to the knowledge that his picture hangs on Jimmy Carter's wall.

Is your life squared away?

Loving God, I will always be squared way as long as Jesus is number one in my life. In Jesus name, Amen.

Ron Newhouse

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