Friday's Memories

Good evening, how are ya'll today? Come on in for a cup of coffee and sit a spell. Today as we traveled to Valdosta, I was thinking about Sunday at our church. We are beginning a building program and need a little money and the kick-off for the Beyond Measure is this Sunday.

Being asked to be on the leadership team was quite an honor, but also a huge responsibility which I have fretted over a good bit and prayed even more, for we really need the additional room and the economy is in the pits right now. So, God has given us a God-sized task that only He can show the way. Kinda awesome isn't it.

We have this really nice young man - most men are "young" to me now- from Nashville, TN to guide us through this process. Of course since we are Southern Baptist, they always come from Nashville. When I was introduced to him for the first time. I think I kinda shocked him a little bit for he had just met this little, white-haired, angelic looking Southern Lady and didn't know she had a wicked sense of humor. As we waited in line for the fried chicken, remember this is a Baptist church and have to have chicken, I asked him where he lived. He responded, "Nashville" and that he worked at the Southern Baptist Headquarters. I just couldn't help but comment, "Oh, the place where Southern Baptist bow three times a day and it faces east." He looked at me with a confused look on his face, so I dug a little deeper and said, "You know, like Mecca."

The look turned to disbelief and astonishment and I just kept putting fried chicken and mashed potatoes and gravy on my plate. As the meeting progressed and he found out I had been selected as the "Spiritual Team" leader, I am sure he is beginning to wonder about our church. However, I think a little humor always helps at least it does me, but I'm not sure he was amused. Maybe in the coming months I can redeem myself. Probably not, for I am sure I will surprise him again with a similar comment.

I also had to write my stewardship testimony and that was not easy but I will not confess to the entire Net. It did make me think about my daddy for he was always asked to give this type of testimony at our home church in Camden, AL. I remember once he gave his testimony of how our family tithed, which we did, it caused quite a stir after church.

We were all gathered out front of the church and one of the men, Mr. Cook, said loudly since he was deaf, "I want ya'll to know this man tithes everything he makes and they don't have an inside bathroom." There was total silence as everyone turned to look at us and I am sure mama hurried to get us in the car to go home.

Now this was true at that time, but it is hardly something you wanted shouted to the whole world standing in front of the church. Mr. Cook meant well, I am sure, but my mama could have chopped his head off and laughed while doing it. She was one mad woman and she never forgot it and reminded us of it every time she thought about it.

Another time after one of his testimonies, we had another incident. There was a rather well-to-do gentlemen in our church that did not tithe and in fact was stingy. He liked to show off his money and tried to run the church, but everybody knew he didn't give a tenth like he should. He also slept through every sermon so maybe he just didn't know he was supposed to. Naw, I don't think so, he was just stingy. After daddy had spoken one Sunday, this man said, "Ott, you are going to have to quit giving these talks. You inspired me so, I put in $10.00 in the collection plate." Wow, a whole ten dollars! Not sure who he thought he was fooling, for we all knew better for he never gave that much. About the only time he gave that much was when it was for a window or table or something he put in the church which would have his name engraved on it, bless his heart.

Yep, our family always tithed. We had these little offering envelope boxes hung in a row behind the bedroom door - daddy's at the top with mama, me, Arvin and Sam's boxes hung underneath. When he got his paycheck 2 times a month, he would bring the tithe home in cash and divide it out among the boxes. Each Sunday, we took our money. put it in the little envelopes and checked the boxes for attendance, bible study, Sunday School lesson studied and attending church, put the amount on it, signed our names, put it in our Bibles and carried it to the storehouse (church). This was done every Sunday we lived under that roof, what a heritage.

One year our envelopes were different from all the rest of the church. We had a parakeet which liked to chew paper and one day when he was out of his cage for exercise, he perched on the boxed and kinda chewed a little off the top of the envelopes. You know, just a little jagged edging to make them pretty. Daddy and mama didn't think it was so pretty but we thought it was pretty funny. He also decorated the top of my piano lesson books and my teacher was not amused. However, Mrs. Barnett was not amused by much, for she was rather a somber lady.

Well, that is about it for today. Just a tad tired, had a long day. Don't forget to carry your tithes to the storehouse on Sunday and set your clocks up and hour. Remember, Spring forward.

Nuff said,

The Georgia Peach

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