Working Lunch & More

India Missions ConferenceFriday morning, Bonnie and I left Winona, MS at 8:25 a.m., bound first for Florence, AL. That was over a three and a half hour drive. It was our purpose to meet up with Janet and Wayne Barrier, which we did at noon for lunch at the Olive Garden restaurant. The occasion of our get-together was to plug into the schedule the speaker names for the 2014 India Missions Conference. The World Evangelism Team, of which the Barriers, others and we are a part, has accepted responsibility for hosting the next India Missions Conference.

First things first, though. We had a sumptuous meal with pleasant company; Bonnie and I shared an Italian sampler of lasagna, parmesan chicken and creamy fettuccine. The male server excelled, too – even bringing us fresh drinks and finally to-go cups an hour after we had finished our meals and paid for them, too. Essentially, we monopolized the table after eating, turning it into a workstation.

It took quite a while to fill in the schedule on which previously World Evangelism Team Members had agreed at our annual meeting a few weeks ago. In addition, we had whittled down potential speakers to a pool with which we were working today. The next undertaking will be to invite the various speakers and attempt to confirm their participation in the various slots as speakers, panelists, moderators and master of ceremonies.

Before parting from the parking lot, we delivered two packages to the Barriers, one of which was a case of Global Harvest magazine. Afterward, Bonnie and I pointed the car toward Cleveland, TN, where we will lodge Saturday evening with brother Robert and sister Barbara Wright; each year, they graciously open their home to us and extend the sweetest hospitality to Bonnie and me. Sunday morning, I will speak during the Bible class and worship for the Central Church of Christ. That evening, I will speak for the Ooltewah, TN Church of Christ, and we will lodge Sunday with our dear friends, brother Winston and sister Cathy Stringfield.

Friday night, though, we are lodging at the Best Western in Huntsville, AL. We ate supper at Jason’s Deli, a chain restaurant with which we were not familiar. It turned out to be an excellent choice! The sandwich we shared was superb, only out performed by the exceedingly friendly good service of every employee we encountered. That was a far cry from the interaction I had with a Wal-Mart employee a couple of days before in Mississippi, when I inquired about the price of a HP Photosmart printer; the pricing was neither on the shelf nor on the box, which was high on the top shelf. The “associate” told me to take the box to a counter and have the price checked; the item yet sits where I found it, and it can sit there forever as far as I am concerned. It is always a delight to find persons who decide to own their jobs and serve both their employers and the customers in an admirable way. My confidence was restored and bolstered today at Olive Garden and Jason’s Deli.

We are at rest. Tomorrow, we resume our journey. We pray for safety on our trip and hope that the car doesn’t strand us. The engine light is on, and the Town & Country van jerks and bucks. Of course, something is whining as well, and has done so now for two years. In addition, the air conditioner is leaking inside on the floor at Bonnie’s feet. We attempted three times to have the AC problem fixed in Winona, but to no avail. We tried to have the engine light, jerking and AC problems addressed at a Chrysler dealer on Monday, but the shop wanted me to drop the car off so that maybe on Wednesday someone could look into the problems, and that days after that perhaps it could be repaired; they were willing to rent me a car! Subsequently, we tried again to have these problems addressed in Winona, but unsuccessfully. Somewhere along the line, between travels and not in the county where we live, we need to leave the car with a Chrysler dealer. The Town & Country has over 171,000 miles on it, and little things (and maybe some expensive things also) are breaking down. We kept the last car 10 years, but we are wearing this one out more quickly with our extensive travels. We prayed for the last car every time we went on a trip, and it must be about time to start praying for this one, too!

Bonnie is doing well; she always has fallen asleep if not doing something as we ride along the highways, but our drive affords her ample opportunity between respites to rest and recharge. The real rest for which we both long is in heaven – eternally.

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