Last Thursday I was at a cabinet meeting in the Iowa Annual Conference Center in Des Moines and went out for a walk at lunch. This has become a common practice of mine as the weather moderates. A month before, walking in a nearby industrial park, I noticed that there were little plastic bottles strewn randomly in the grass beside the sidewalk.
My curiosity aroused, I picked up one of the empty bottles and read the label, Fireball Red Hot Cinnamon Whisky. Hmm, I said to myself. That’s strange. Over the course of my forty-minute walk, I counted 273 empty Cinnamon Whisky 50 ml bottles (3.38 tablespoons). What a mess!!! Although they were quite small, the sheer number of bottles that were obviously thrown out of cars by drinking drivers was scary.
I need to offer a disclaimer up front that I have never had a drink of alcohol in my life, except for a few tiny sips of communion wine in the Lutheran chapel at Wittenberg University in Springfield, Ohio when I was a college student. Choosing to refrain from alcohol is one way in which I can witness to my faith, and it has occasioned many fruitful conversations over the years.