Nearer My God To Thee

BudLiteGood morning, y’all. Cold, cold cold. I think the high temperature for the next few days is freezing, with a chance of snow or freezing rain on Wednesday. Oh, joy! I know I complain about the heat in the Summer, but the heat doesn’t make my old bones ache like the cold does. It is bone chilling cold. In fact, it’s so cold that Granny Waller’s teeth are chattering, and they’re in a glass on her nightstand. It’s cold I tell you.

Anyway, I stayed inside at Number Two to watch this week’s telecast from Channel 99 in Blairsville. The Full Gospel Original Church of God was once again packed to the rafters. As the camera panned the crowd, I saw folks I’ve never seen before. In fact, I might have even been alarmed if I had seen some of them out walking on the street. This new group of folks that’s come in from the hinterlands is about a diverse a group of folks as you’d ever hope to see. I mean, I’m talking Barnum and Bailey kind of diverse. We’re appreciative of the body arts in the Lite family, and you’ll find most of our family sports an ink illustration or two. Where I draw the line is puncturing perfectly good flesh and sticking some sort of appliance through the hole. I’m not talking about women getting their ears pierced. I’m talking about males or females puncturing their lips, cheeks, and noses. I’m still internally debating whether or not the male of the species need to puncture their ears. I am sure that they don’t need to puncture their ears and then stick something that looks like a spool for thread through the hole to make the earlobe drag like a basset hound’s. That can’t be good for you, can it?

Well, I know these folks don’t worry about my approval one iota, and I’m happy they don’t. I do believe they’re in the right spot to have their lifestyles and choices judged, though. I can think of a few members of the congregation that will tell the newcomers what they think of their looks straight off. One blast of “country wisdom” from Granny Waller should separate the curious from the confirmed right way. Granny is 97 years old and she doesn’t have one bit of problem telling someone if she thinks their jeans are dirty, or if the piercing in their nostril makes them look like a heathen savage. You always know where you stand with Granny Waller.

Now, I don’t know if these people wear their affectations because they think the piercing improves their looks, or if they’re proud to show other people their ability to endure pain. Either way, the hipster crowd served as an interesting backdrop to this week’s sermon on pride.

In this week’s message, the Reverend Helen Handbasket unleashed a blast from the fiery pit to warn the prideful of their eventual reward if they didn’t change their ways. It was not enough that, “pride would go before a fall”, but the Reverend Helen Handbasket threw out a quote by T.S. Elliot that further summed up her feelings on the topic. “Most of the trouble in the world is caused by people wanting to be important”, was the quote. I chewed on that one for a while. I mean, we all want to be important to our families, our communities, maybe even our church. I guess the point was that we should want to be important through our contributions, not a sense of self importance. From that angle, the Reverend Helen Handbasket could have been issuing a challenge to the new members. If you want to be proud of yourself, do good works in the church, don’t just show up dressed to the nines and expect to get recognition for your Bruno Maglis. I can roll with that.

Speaking of good works in the church, I’m trying to keep up with Mulva’s New Years’ resolution for me, and work has begun on The Full Gospel Original Church of God website. If you visit, try not to judge too harshly. Like me, it’s a work in progress.

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