Monday, May 27, 2013

Meet me under the clock

When I arrived in Charlotte many years ago, one of the first restaurants I visited was Andersons, a landmark serving the best pecan pie in town. At least that is what their sign said. It was a great place for some down home cooking and the diverse clientele agreed. Sadly, it is no longer in operation. The building is still there, but not the pie.

I guess every city and town has a landmark, which is why I read with interest that a famous landmark from my childhood was turning 100 years old. It’s a huge, 2500 pound, beautifully designed, four faced, outdoor clock at the corner of Fifth and Smithfield Street in Pittsburgh, which is in the heart of the city’s shopping area. Originally it hung, or was mounted, in front of the Kaufmann’s department store and was known simply as the Kaufmann’s clock. Kaufmann’s was later replaced by Macy’s, but the clock remains.

Anyone who’s lived in Pittsburgh for any length of time probably knows the phrase, “meet me under the clock.” It was the perfect meeting place in the heart of the city. Corrine and I actually have a painting of the clock in our downstairs hallway, a reminder of the place we call home.

Do you ever think of landmarks in your hometown? I guess if you’re from Gaffney, you might think of the “Peach.” If you’re from Matthews, you might think of Renfrow Hardware, an amazing landmark in many ways.

Landmarks help us remember a simpler time, or mark a spot that is like a treasure chest full of good memories. Landmarks remind us of where we came from. They also help us find our way in today’s highly complex and technological age.

Landmarks are significant in Biblical history as well.

Long ago, God instructed Joshua to take twelve stones from the middle of the Jordan River and carry them with him to the other side. Of course, Joshua did as he was told, even though he must have thought, “Of all the things you could ask me to do, you want me to move rocks?!”

Then God lets him in on a holy, sacred secret. God tells him, “When your children ask their parents in the time to come, ‘What do these stones mean?’ You shall tell your children the story of how God helped you cross the Jordan.”

When your children ask about landmarks in your life, what stories will you tell them?

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