Part of a series of "rambling reflections" by Pastor David Riley – a church minister located on the Australian Gold Coast. Make sure you click the "follow" button to receive an update on these articles as soon as they're posted.
Charles Laughton was a famous English actor. Classically trained, Laughton performed in many of Shakespeare’s plays in London and went on to star in a number of major Hollywood films during the 1930’s and 40’s.
There’s a story from Charles Laughton’s life that illustrates the difference between acting and living.
Laughton was attending a Christmas party with family friends in London one year. During the evening the host of the party asked everyone to recite a favourite poem or passage from literature that best represented the spirit of Christmas. When it was the turn of the famous actor Laughton skilfully recited Psalm 23 from the Bible. Of course, everyone applauded Laughton’s excellent performance when he finished – and then it moved onto the next person’s turn.
The last to participate was an adored elderly aunt who had dozed off in a corner. Someone gently woke her and explained what was going on. She thought for a moment and in a shaky voice the aged lady began to recite Psalm 23: “The Lord is my shepherd I shall not want…”
There was a slight disquiet in the room for a a very brief moment as everyone realised the aunt wasn’t aware Laughton had shared the exact same passage a few minutes earlier, but they allowed her continue. But within a couple of lines of Psalm 23 something happened – the emotion with which this old lady spoke these famous words of Scripture took the gathering by surprise. When she finished there were audible sobs from some of those gathered, so unexpectedly moved were they by the re-telling of these ancient words.
When the party was over and Charles Laughton was leaving the host thanked him for coming, and then awkwardly commented on the difference in responses from Laughton’s reciting of Psalm 23 to that of his old aunt.
Charles Laughton’s response is said to have been: “Yes, well, I guess I simply know the Psalm – but she clearly knows the Shepherd.”
Being a follower of Jesus is not acting a part but living a real relationship with your Creator.
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away, and behold – the new has come!” (2 Corinthians 5:17).
About this blog: Pastor David Riley is a minister of the Seventh-day Adventist Church and lives on the Gold Coast in Australia. This article is from his “Reverential Ramblings” series – which you can subscribe to by clicking “follow” on this website.
Want to read more inspirational stories of faith from this series? Click here to read the inspiring story of how one soldier’s sacrifice changed an entire prisoner-of-war camp during World War II.
Pastor David Riley is a minister of the Seventh-day Adventist Church and lives on the Gold Coast in Australia. This article is from his “Reverential Ramblings” series – which you can subscribe to by clicking “follow” on this website.
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