Why I Write –2

Good morning, everyone. It’s somewhere south of thirty below zero, not to get above -25 today. A hard time, quite beyond quaint and romantic.

I woke up on this cold morning to the following message:

Good morning Kent Nerburn,

I pastor a small church in the suburbs of Milwaukee.

One of my members, Doris, died on Tuesday and her funeral is tomorrow afternoon.

On her bedside table, her daughter found your book “Small Graces” that she had been reading. She had marked the next reading as the final chapter, the closing of the day. The last chapter she had read was the death of your friend and the distant shore. It was eerie.

We are reading parts of “the closing of the day” in her funeral service tomorrow.
I am preaching from John’s gospel story of the wedding at Cana. It was the reading on the last Sunday she was in church.

At the funeral service I am going to allow water to be water and shift the miracle on changed hearts, so filled with laughter and love that ordinary water tasted sweeter than any wine anywhere.

Doris’ magic was in her ordinariness. The ordinariness of water and air.

Her death is a huge blow to our church family where she has been a member for 38 years.

Thank you for keeping her company and journeying with her these past few months of her life with “Small Graces”.



My day has suddenly gotten a lot warmer.

2 thoughts on “Why I Write –2”

  1. Dear Kent, 2-2-2004
    I thank you for your crisp, concise and caring handling of the 26 letters of our marvelous alphabet. I have many favorite authors but I have put you at the head of the class. Thank you for writing “Simple Truths” I have now bought a stack two feet high and plan to make another purchase soon. I have a problem because I want to send one to every person in my circle of influence. Would you be kind enough to give me a call. My number is 800-745-7315 Dave

  2. How powerful to know that your words were the last ones breathed in and out by this woman before she died, and how thoughtful of the pastor to pass this on to you. What special care for this woman … so ordinary … I think not.

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