As we celebrate Christmas this week I depart from the regular format of my column in order to share one of the most beautiful poems I have ever read.
When I was a child I heard, “One Solitary Life” by Reverend James Allan Francis for the first time. The message is profound and has impacted my life deeply – I hope it will impact yours too.
One Solitary Life
By Rev. James Allan Francis
"He was born in an obscure village,
a child of a peasant woman.
He grew up in another obscure village
where he worked in a carpenter shop
until he was thirty.
Then for three years
he was an itinerant preacher.
He never had a family.
Or owned a home.
He never set foot inside a big city.
He never traveled two hundred miles
from the place he was born.
He never wrote a book
or held an office.
He did none of the things
that usually accompany greatness.
While he was still a young man,
the tide of popular opinion
turned against him.
His friends deserted him.
He was turned over to his enemies.
He went through the mockery of a trial.
He was nailed to a cross
between two thieves.
While he was dying
his executioners gambled
for the only piece of property he had,
When he was dead,
he was taken down
and laid in a borrowed grave.
Nineteen centuries have come and gone
and today he is still the central figure
for much of the human race.
All the armies that ever marched,
All the navies that ever sailed
And all the parliaments that ever sat
And all the kings that ever reigned
have not affect the life of man
Upon this earth
As powerfully as this
One Solitary Life."
The single most important question you must answer in your life is, “What will I do with this man Jesus?” If you have yet to answer this question, please don’t wait any longer.
Jesus was not a politician or lawyer, yet he transformed systems, rules and laws forever. He was not a lobbyist, yet he became the strongest advocate for the poor, disabled and helpless that the world has ever seen. He was not a businessman, yet he created the greatest code of ethics that, if followed, would stabilize the world’s economy overnight.