Bound for Bear Creek, Alabama we were for Sunday morning, June 29, 2014. There were 18 of us present by time for worship, including Bonnie, Rebecca and me. Some were out sick or away, but the Bear Creek Church of Christ is still an aging, shrinking congregation. Nevertheless, we are always enthusiastically received, and the little church helps us financially in our foreign mission work, as well as participates with other mission activities associated with World Evangelism. This Sunday, we received the entire weekly contribution for use overseas to purchase Bibles in the languages of the nations in which we work. The good that this will bring about is immeasurable this side of eternity.
During Bible class, I made my PowerPoint presentation about our 2014 Guyana Mission Trip; I preface it by introducing other World Evangelism team members with whom we are associated and with whom we voluntarily cooperate (i.e., Betty Choate, Wayne and Janet Barrier, Jerry and Paula Bates). During worship, I preached “Understanding How God Communicates with Mankind, Today.” Afterward, it was our good pleasure to spend some time with brother Royce and sister Helen Mann at a diner in Haleyville, AL and in their home.
That evening, I spoke for the Antioch Church of Christ outside of Killen, AL. Counting the three of us, 32 were present. Here, too, some were ill; one was terminally ill in the hospital and another had perished the preceding week. Again, we were received wonderfully well as always. This little congregation has a long history, some of which is depicted on a bulletin board with text and very old pictures. I made my PowerPoint presentation about our 2014 Guyana Mission Trip. This congregation helps us make our foreign trips and is gearing up to get us to Asia in October and November of this year.
Pausing at the Arby’s restaurant in Florence, AL for supper, we bumped into some of the members with whom we had just worshipped at the Antioch Church of Christ. In addition, that little eatery hosted diners from among several local churches of Christ, who without prior planning to do so just happened to show up at the same place, the same day at the same time. The atmosphere was transformed from what it might have been by modestly dressed, polite patrons who purposely prayed for their respective meals before tearing into them. Christians don’t use a very big brush or much red paint to “paint the town red.” I wish everywhere and everyone we encounter were like my fellow eaters at Arby’s Sunday night.
We arrived back in Winona, MS by 11 p.m., and we went straight to bed. Another long day had ended, barely before ushering in the next day.