Monday, June 30, 2008


Pictured above are: Eldon and Martha Smith (far left and far right), me, my wife, Coletta, and our granddaughter, Miley showing off! This photo was taken in front of the present church building of the Liberty Baptist Church, where Coletta and I have now ministered for 12 years.

The Smiths have been on the staff of the Westside Baptist Church in Hutchinson, Kansas for over 30 years. Eldon and I worked side by side as assistant pastors for 4 years there, then I became the Sr. Pastor and got to "boss" Eldon around for nine years before our coming to Ohio. I had just started my Father's Day sermon a few weeks ago, and here walks in Eldon and Martha into our sanctuary. They were out here on a vacation, and slipped in on us! Eldon has been an assistant pastor and music pastor all these years. While we worked together in Kansas, he led a 60 voice adult choir, and today, he sings in a Southern Gospel Quartet, leads the music and still serves full time at Westside.

Coletta and I could not have been more surprised, pleased, or happier than to be "reunited" with our old "co-workers!" After morning church, we went to the nearby China Town Express and brought back a bunch of old memories over lunch. When I told Coletta, "If I would have known they were coming, I would have had Eldon teach Sunday School, sing a mini-concert, preach the Father's Day sermon, and had a choir clinic Sunday night!" Her response to me was, "And that's why they didn't tell us they were coming! They were on VACATION!" I hate it when she's right!

Eldon and Martha, you made me speechless that Sunday! Thank you for making our Father's Day so complete! I was truly surprised more than you will ever know, and it sure was fun preaching to you again!

That's something to think about!