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Living Large in Northeast Ohio


7100 Lockwood Blvd. # 392

Youngstown, OH 44512

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March 5, 2016

Years ago, Robert Henderson, the current pastor at Lord of Life Lutheran Church in Chagrin Falls, gave a sermon at Zion Lutheran Church in Youngstown while interning.  It is a sermon that has stayed with me over the years. Those of you who know me have heard me quote it from time to time. As we prepare for Thanksgiving during these very disturbing times, allow me to paraphrase his sermon. It has a message worth repeating.


A lady had spent a very long day shopping at the local mall, getting ready for the Thanksgiving holiday and beyond. Before going home, she decided to rest a bit in the food court, and have a snack. She stopped at one of the stores and bought a dozen cookies. She then found an empty table in the very crowded food court and deposited her bag of cookies, her packages and coat, and went to buy herself a cup of coffee to go with her cookies.


Upon her return to her table, she found another gentleman had occupied one of the empty seats at the table she had claimed as her own. He was drinking a cup of coffee and reading a newspaper. Undeterred, she refused to relinquish her table, and she sat down also. After sitting down, she reached into the bag of cookies for her snack. The man opposite her looked up from his paper and smiled, and also reached into the bag and helped himself to a cookie.


The lady was incensed. How dare he take one of her cookies? She reached into the bag again for another cookie, and once again the man looked up from his paper and smiled, and he also took another cookie. Now she was really getting mad, and the scenario repeated itself again, and again, until there was only one cookie left in the bag. They both reached for the last cookie at the same time, and their hands bumped each other. The man smiled, and broke the cookie in two and he ate his 1/2. He then folded his newspaper acknowledging the lady, and left the table.


The lady was furious. How could the mall let this sort of thing happen? So she decided she was going to complain to mall security. She stood up, picked up her coat, and picked up her packages. There, underneath the pile, was her bag of cookies. Whenever you think God is taking something of yours away, think again. It may be Him that is sharing His cookies with you.


Happy Thanksgiving.

Mark G. Mangie