Keep your fork! Happy Thanksgiving 2011

At work there is a lady who shares a story once a year or so. It’s called “Keep Your Fork, The Best is Yet to Come”. She tells it in a way that is supposed to be motivational for the change coming. I have often thought, “Wow there must be more to the story. This has to have a spiritual meaning and not just some poorly done work motivation.” I looked it up and found two things as well as a racing thought of my own.

First, as we think about racing and this story, we think about the next race. It is the best because it is next. There is hope for a win, a top five, something special, that best finish ever, the stepping stone to a championship, the first pole win, that checkered flag and trophy, the start of a new season, a new opportunity, a new team or shaking down a new car.  

Second, it is said to be a fable that goes to Canadian and royalty and pie.  

Third, is the story below:

There once was a woman who was diagnosed with a terminal illness and had been given three months to live. So as she was getting her things “in order”, she contacted her pastor and asked him to come to her house to discuss certain aspects of her final wishes. She told him which songs she wanted sung at the service, what scriptures she would like read, and what outfit she wanted to be buried in. The woman also requested to be buried with her favorite Bible. Everything was in order and the pastor was preparing to leave when the woman suddenly remembered something very important to her.

“There’s one more thing,” she said excitedly.

“What’s that?” came the pastor’s reply.

“This is very important,” the woman continued. “I want to be buried with a fork in my right hand.”

The pastor stood looking at the woman, not knowing quite what to say. “That surprises you, doesn’t it?” the woman asked. “Well, to be honest, I’m puzzled by the request,” said the pastor. The woman explained. “In all my years of attending church socials and potluck dinners, I always remember that when the dishes of the main course were being cleared, someone would inevitably lean over and say, ‘Keep your fork’.

It was my favorite part because I knew that something better was coming…like velvety chocolate cake or deep-dish apple pie. Something wonderful, and with substance! So, I just want people to see me there in that casket with a fork in my hand and I want them to wonder ‘What’s with the fork?’ Then I want you to tell them: “Keep your fork….the best is yet to come”.

The pastor’s eyes welled up with tears of joy as he hugged the woman goodbye. He knew this would be one of the last times he would see her before her death. But he also knew that the woman had a better grasp of heaven than he did. She KNEW that something better was coming.

At the funeral people were walking by the woman’s casket and they saw the pretty dress she was wearing and her favorite Bible and the fork placed in her right hand. Over and over, the pastor heard the question “What’s with the fork?” And over and over he smiled. During his message, the pastor told the people of the conversation he had with the woman shortly before she died. He also told them about the fork and what it symbolized to her. The pastor told the people how he could not stop thinking about the fork and told them that they probably would not be able to stop thinking about it either. He was right.

So the next time you reach down for your fork, let it remind you oh so gently, that the best is yet to come.

The End (of the story)

Back to my thoughts and tying into Thanksgiving. The author left out the best part, the Scripture. Jude :21 Keep yourselves in God’s love as you wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring you to eternal life. NIV

2 Thessalonians 2:16-17May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope,encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word. NIV

Titus 2:13-15  while we wait for the blessed hope-the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ,who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good.  These, then, are the things you should teach. Encourage… KJV

This is where the hope of the best to come is found. It is in the Lord and His Word and His promises. He promises eternal life to all who turn to Him in salvation yearning to do His will and follow Him. For this we can celebrate Thanksgiving; giving the Lord God thanks no matter the circumstances around us. I have to say if you don’t have salvation worked out, it has to be very bleak and hopeless. Don’t live that way. Turn to Jesus right now and call out to Him. See your sin in the mirror and repent of the sin. Own it and confess it. Then acknowledge that Jesus is Lord and he paid the price for your sin. He is the only way, the only hope. Then may you have a Thanksgiving filled with rejoicing in what the Lord has done.

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