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By Ruth Gadberry
Okay, Guys and Gals, we’ll be there this weekend. Saturday, to be exact. Where? We’ll be in SUMMER, ready or not. Yes, yes, it already feels like summer and it’s hot enough for a bunch of you. Temperatures already above normal for this time of the year. If you haven’t reached the 100 degree mark yet, you probably will any day now. What will REAL summer feel like? Some of you are already wishing for cooler weather. A bunch of people would really welcome a good rain about now. Did you really enjoy the rains and cool weather when we were having them? Were you too busy wishing for hot, dry weather? That’s us; never satisfied.
More hot, dry weather is expected for the rest of this week. Well, there is a slight possibility of showers this weekend. A possibility, not a probability. We are already being warned to be careful – VERY careful – about burning trash, brush piles, or anything else. A wind can whip through before you realize it and sparks can fly in every direction and you may have more fires than you can handle. So, please do be extra careful about any type of burning. If you are roasting hotdogs or marshmallows, hey, be careful about that too.
It was great having everybody back together for worship services at First Baptist Church Sunday morning. It was just a tad different, but nice. Everyone met at 11:00 o’clock for the services and kinda scattered out all over the sanctuary and also the gym which had been opened up for the service. That’s right; they did observe a type of social distancing. Not sitting close to each other, leaving lots of space between people; that sort of thing. Ruth only noticed two people actually wearing masks and they are to be commended. After services people got a bit closer together to greet friends, etc. But they didn’t overdo it. Well, not most of them anyway.
They were back to celebrating birthdays and anniversaries Sunday morning and that was good. Preacher Joey, Roy, Chris – maybe you should have a makeup day for all those people who had birthdays and celebrated anniversaries when we weren’t meeting for services. Surely there were some celebrations during that stay at home time, don’t you think?
There was a guest speaker at Stringtown First Baptist Church Sunday morning, Trey Hedrick. Some of you will know him. Voca, wasn’t he your pastor at one time? Did we get that wrong? You might say he is our missionary to the students at Southeastern Oklahoma State College at Durant. He has a ministry to the students. They are meeting in various places at this time but hope to, sometime in the near future, have their own place to meet with an office for Trey; the whole thing.
This is a great ministry and one that is really needed. Please pray for Trey and for the work he does there with the students of Southeastern. Okay? While you are taking with God, talk to Him about the students he will be ministering to. Okay again?
Lil was at church Sunday morning and it was GREAT to see her again! Remember? She fell and fractured the bone in her left leg. She had some hospital time, some rehab time, and some stay at home time. She is up and going again. She isn’t even using a walker! Okay, so she does carry a big stick. She can lean on it if need be, chase away a mean dog, clobber a burglar or robber if one should appear, and use it for all sorts of things. Way to go Lil! It’s so good to have you back!
Saturday, as you probably know, is the first day of Summer. Something special is taking place on that evening. It will be a benefit for Zeke Sherred. We aren’t sure of all the details but apparently medical bills, relating to an accident, are stacking up higher and higher.
The benefit will be held at the Fire House in Stringtown, beginning at 5:30 Saturday evening. It will be a bar-b-cue dinner; bar-b-cue, potato salad, baked beans, that sort of thing. There will be a bake sale auction and you are invited to bring cakes, pies, cookies and all those other yummy goodies you are known for baking. We heard something about a silent auction. Maybe another auction that isn’t so silent. Anyway, it’s an opportunity to start Summer off in a big way. You can enjoy a good meal, visit with friends and neighbors, meet some new friends, and be a blessing to someone with more problems than you have. You’ll be there? Great!
Yes, the kids and their sponsors are planning to go to Falls Creek this summer, even though they have canceled the regular camp activities. Each church who chooses to go will be responsible for conducting their own studies, preaching, activities and everything that is usually planned for them. They’ll use their own cabin, or the cabin they have rented, and just do their own thing. The kids who want to go and the adults who want to go as sponsors, met after services Sunday morning to start the planning process.
Wednesday evening Bible study will be starting again in July. The kids Wednesday evening activities won’t resume until a later date. We’ll let you know Kids, when the busses will start picking you up and that sort of thing.
Sunday School? Preacher Joey hasn’t mentioned just when that will start again and lots of people are really missing Sunday School. Hopefully It won’t be much longer.
JC and Ruth had a great surprise last Wednesday. Wes and Mary Barfield came by for a visit. They even brought lunch! You can’t beat that! You probably remember Wes. He and JC and Ruth share a set of grandkids and great-grandkids. Now Mary is their Memaw Mary. They had just spent several days at a lake in Texas with a bunch of friends from Kenwood Baptist Church in days gone by and other friends as well.
Yes, they brought in lots and lots of fish. When you get Wes and those preachers, Ronnie and David, together you are certain to catch fish. They even brought JC and Ruth a couple of bags of fish. David always takes his freezer to the lake to put the fish in. Talk about optimism!
Brooklyn was back in Stringtown this past weekend. She was happy to show JC and Ruth – her great-grandparents – and Uncle Ray and Aunt Beth, the place on her leg where she had stitches. The stitches are out now but she might have just a little bitty scar to remember the experience.
Brooklyn’s Aunt Beth shared her own knee injury experience with Brooklyn, including her own scar. It seems that when she was Brooklyn’s age, or maybe a little older, she cut her knee on a barbed wire fence when she was climbing over the fence to steal plums from a neighbors plum tree. Of course she was welcome to just walk into his yard any time she wanted to and pick all the plums she wanted. There was something daring and exciting about climbing over the fence to get them. Beth has been baking a ‘cake of the week’ for her Dad. This week though, she baked several kinds of cookies for him. Brooklyn, of course, sampled them and gave her approval. She also took some home with her to share with her brother. Carter. Mmmm, wonder how many cookies were still in the bag when she got home with them?
Zack still has a cast on his ankle and will have it checked again this week. It isn’t broken but has a bad sprain and maybe the tendons or whatever are pulled, or torn, or messed up or something. He isn’t supposed to put much, if any, weight on his ankle and he doesn’t do a real good job of that. After all, he is a Gadberry and Gadberry Guys are known for being stubborn and hard headed. It kinda runs in the family. Only in the male members of the family of course.
Ray must have felt left out with all the knee and ankle problems in the family. So, last week he got his own injury and you can’t believe what happened. He had been taking down a fence or something and laid his hammer on top of his chuck wagon or something. Anyway, when he yanked the last piece of wire lose, it hit the hammer and the hammer fell and hit Ray on his leg. Well, yes, it’s swollen and painful. Ray learned what NOT to do.
By the way, Beth and Ray are getting a new driveway. Maybe you’ve seen them working on it. The two cattle guards have already been installed. More cement will be poured from the garage to the first cattle guard and the rest of the driveway will be gravel. They should be ready for any type of weather after it’s finished. The yard will, soon be fenced in and no electric fence will be necessary to keep Zack’s horses in the pasture.
Beth and Ray enjoy watching the deer. Beth is waiting for a doe she sees regularly bring her baby to the yard. They couldn’t watch the deer while they lived in Duncanville and really enjoy watching them now. If you are thinking about deer hunting in their pasture; FORGET IT! It isn’t allowed. It’s off limits. You aren’t welcome. You get the idea?
Well, the Great Wall of Stringtown seems to be finished. Again. Now it just stands there, waiting for another big rainy season to see if it does what it’s supposed to do. What do you think? Will it hold? Have to be done all over again? We’ll see.
Are the Nursing Homes open for visitors again? Just wondering. JC and Ruth have really missed visiting with Sis and wonder when they can visit her again.
The coronavirus rages on. More cases are reported and now Atoka County has several cases instead of just the one they’ve had for so long. Of course more people are being tested so they are finding more cases. Yes, many people have died as a result of the virus but many more have recovered and are well and healthy again, back at work or whatever they were doing before the virus attacked them. Some people believe the virus is coming back for a second big attack and maybe we’ve quit being careful too soon. Others insist that things just must open up again. The economy can’t handle being shut down much longer. Things are, definitely, being opened up again but care is taken to keep people separated by a little more space than they used to observe. Some people still wear masks but many don’t. Yes, some places require you to wear masks and that’s okay too. But remember; God is still in control. For whatever reason. He is allowing the virus to continue. Has He gotten your attention yet? What are you doing about it? He has already told us, in the Old Testament, that if we will confess our sins and turn from our wicked ways. He will forgive our sins and heal our lands. When will we turn back to Almighty God instead of expecting the government to take care of everything?
Look at all the riots, demonstrations, and all that sort of thing that are taking placed all over our nation. Even in Atoka. Some of them are peaceful and they even go around making sure no trash was left behind. It’s easy to respect and admire people like that. Those who riot, burn, injure, destroy and loot get no respect from anybody, even their own people. They are hurting themselves and don’t even realize it. A mob can take over and people find that they are doing things they hadn’t even considered doing. People are funny, aren’t they? Or strange, or weird, or…
God gave you another day today. What are you going to do with it?