FORT GEORGE G. MEADE, Md. - The story of a little girl, her father and a bicycle served as a metaphor for God's love and righteousness in an early morning sermon delivered by Installation Chaplain (Lt. Col.) Sid A. Taylor Sr.

Taylor delivered his first sermon on post July 21 at the Courses Clubhouse before a group of about 55 people from the Main Post Chapel's Protestant Congregation during the group's monthly prayer breakfast.

Retired Col. Michael Oldham, spiritual ministry leader of the Protestant Congregation Ministry Council, leads the monthly prayer breakfasts.

"The purpose is to provide a Christian time of fellowship for the Fort Meade community in one of the chapel congregations, regardless of denomination," said Oldham, who started the group a decade ago.

Taylor volunteered to speak to members of the congregation to introduce himself as the new leader of Fort Meade's religious community.

The 20-minute sermon followed a breakfast of scrambled eggs, bacon and sausage and a hymn.

Taylor, who stood in front of the podium to engage his audience, used humor to describe how a little girl begged her father for a new bicycle. The father encouraged his daughter to save her allowance until she could buy the bike.

But when they visited the bicycle shop, the little girl burst into tears when she realized that the 76 cents she had saved was not enough to buy the $110 bike.

The father took pity on the child and told her, "Give me all you've got. Surrender to me and then I'll cover you for the rest," said Taylor as he narrated the story. "I love you and I have enough to cover you."

The father's love for his daughter symbolizes God's grace and the love he has for humankind." This is what the Lord has done for us," Taylor said. " We did not have enough, but his love made us worthy, made us righteous."

Citing the biblical verse Romans 3: 21-24, the chaplain said "a righteousness from God, apart from the law, has been revealed."

Taylor explained that humankind, however, has found it difficult to follow religious law.

"The law doesn't penetrate our souls," he said. "It doesn't give us that righteousness."

But through faith, the chaplain said, there is a cure that transforms and cleanses human nature's inability to observe religious law.

"By grace through faith, we have this cure for the human condition," Taylor said. "It enables us to be right before the Lord. It covers us, gives us a new nature. We're forgiven."

The event ended with a prayer and a benediction.

"I thought his sermon related to real life," said Pvt. 1st Class Calah Jarrett of the 310th Military Intelligence Battalion. "He was able to relate to the people on a spiritual level and personal level. I really enjoyed it."

Barbara Fuller, wife of retired Col. Monroe Fuller, said she was moved by the sermon.

"I though the sermon was totally faith-based," she said, "and that gives me assurance that [Taylor] is at the right place at the right time for this community."

Page last updated Thu July 28th, 2011 at 00:00