Today is my brother Brad’s birthday! Happy Birthday big bro! We miss you very much.

When I think of Brad’s birthday, I always think of Elvis’ birthday because it’s the day before Brad’s, and the media always seems to focus on him around this time of year. One morning this past week I watched an interview with Priscilla Presley on the Today Show. I learned that if Elvis would have still been around, he would have been celebrating his 75th birthday. I was also intrigued by Priscilla’s answer when they asked her if Elvis was alive, what would he be doing now? She very straight-forwardly answered ” I don’t know if he’d be doing rock ’n’ roll right now; I think that maybe he’d be going into gospel. Maybe even preaching a little bit. He loved to teach and loved the Bible.” (click here to see the interview)

I’m a big Elvis fan, I love his music and wouldn’t mind if it were played at my funeral. Obviously he was struggling with something, to die from an over-dose.  I love the concept of “struggling” though because it gives me freedom to express that sometimes I don’t understand why God does things his way and it is hard for me to follow him.  I love when people who profess to know God can be honest and share their struggles.  Most of the time I see my relationship with God as a struggle – a tension between following my self’s desires vs. following God’s commands.

Perhaps I’m drawing nonsensical conclusions, but s I found Priscilla’s statement hopeful.  Imagining all the success Elvis had in the world–hel has at least one fan who was born more than a decade after he died!  I uttered a small prayer of thanks while watching the t.v. because I thought this was a testimony to God’s word, how it endures times and fads, fame, success, mistakes, wrong choices and death.

Thinking about Elvis – and figures like him – Johnny Cash is the first to come to mind – also reminds me that they are in a long line of people who knew who God was, but did not always trust the word God had given them and I am grateful that when their struggle was over, they were welcomed into God’s presence.

Adam, Abraham, David — all the way down to Elvis and Johnny Cash.

I hope years after my death someone will be able to make the remark “Ashley loved the Bible.”

I leave you with this video. May the words cause you to ponder God’s goodness.