Iron Mountain ski jump

Iron Mountain ski jump

Friday, September 2, 2016


CHRIST IN WINTER: Reflections on Faith for the Years of Winter

 I’m thinking this morning of my friend and colleague, Grantland Sharp, may he rest in peace, as he was not allowed to in life.

He was cursed with that classy name. [1] He was cursed with rugged, thoughtful good looks. He was cursed with a pleasant baritone voice.

Unfortunately, he was not any of the things that his name and looks and voice promised.

It wasn’t his fault. It was his parents who chose his name, and, in the genetic way, chose his good looks and his manly voice. It was his parents who reared him to be a nice and caring person. Unfortunately, they did not rear him to live up to his image.

He was not a Grantland Sharp. More of a Wilbur Dull. He was not rugged and thoughtful. More reticent and shallow. His voice was manly, yes, but monotonic.

His entire life and career, people expected him to live up to the promises his name and looks and voice made. When he couldn’t do it, they despised him. They thought he was a fraud, when actually, he was very authentic. He was always himself, but people didn’t want the real Grant. They wanted his image.

Grant was a bit dull, but he was not slow. He knew what people expected, and why they expected it. He once told me, “Yes, it bothered me when I was young. Now, though, I know who I am, and God knows who I am. That’s all that matters.”


1] Grantland Sharp is not his real name, but it’s like that.

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