More than likely Father’s Day was celebrated throughout Scioto County Ohio churches. As Beverly and I were making plans this weighed on our minds. I had determined that we would go to church on the Scioto Trail. We were planning on catching an early church so we could meet our family for the big day. Well it just so happens that we were a little mistaken on the start times and we checked out each church there and they had either started or had a 11:00 start time.
For some time I had been wanting to hit several churches in New Boston so we headed over Rosemount Hill. As we entered North Moreland I was surprised to see arrivals at one of the churches on top of my list. There was a reason for wanting to attend this church!
When I was a boy I was sitting in the living room of our house in Eden Park, with mom and brothers. There was a knock on the door. My mother immediately became upset even before answering the door. She was correct in her judgement and she knew the man would only be there for one reason. My Grandfather had died in Church immediately after testifying, having collapsed with a heart attack. It was a devastating time for our family. Today we were going to be worshiping with members of this church which had migrated a few blocks over to this new church in the nineteen eighties!
I thought that probably no one would remember my grandfather Adam Brigner or the incidence that occurred. I was wrong. We had been guided to exactly the correct place to celebrate Father’s Day.
After relaying my story a lady behind us by the name of Josephine Madden said that it was my uncle Charles Duncan who had caught my grandfather as he slumped down in the pew and our beloved Grandfather and my mom’s dad had died in his arms. In my whole life I had not known this story. Beverly and I were touched beyond words.
History is everywhere! In close proximity to this church there is a field that locals have always called the horse fields. Well there have probably not been any horses around there for many years, why would it be called the horse field? Well, because at the beginning of the Civil War this area became a recruitment camp and training area for new recruits. The horses had to be kept somewhere.
I might add that my Nephew Drew Rucker owns a piece of North Moreland history as owner of a North Moreland business landmark known as Shorty’s Barbershop.
We were told that it was on an Easter Sunday that the congregation met at their old Valley Street Church and the members walked over to their current location at the North Moreland Christian Baptist Church of God located at 1910 Harrisonville Avenue.
I have long known the Church Pastor, Paul W. Hagen who brought the morning service together with prayer and a children’s offering that was fun to watch. The Pastor referred that even as it is a special day, it is a day the Lord has made. Buck Musick led the Church in prayer.
Things move rather quickly in these services and it is quite difficult to catch every detail so I share as best I can in story fashion. A lady sang beautifully and the only identification I could catch from a neighbor was it was Bobbie Luther’s mom. That worked for me!
Testimonies were presented between songs randomly and there was a beautiful old hymn titled “There was Jesus!” Then “The Unseen Hand!”
The Pastor said he asked a Liz if she would say something and she said no, but I will sing. Her song was actually a wonderful story for Father’s Day. She said it was a song for all of you fathers out there. The title was “Shoes!”
It went something like this……. I look at those dirty shoes. The sacrifices of a man as he puts his feet inside. Times to make it through, a hero. I am thankful for the man who walks in these shoes. He walks in the house with mud and dirt, but all I can see is a tender hearted man. A hero, God only made a few. I am thankful for the man who wears these shoes. She had written this song in honor of her dad, Bud Musick.
At this time in the service the Pastor shared a voice memo from a congregation member to his parents from his tour of duty. It was quite touching. Then there was the song, “In the eye of the storm!”
Sandy Conkle, Beverly’s childhood friend she was surprised to see had made seven cherry pies which were awarded to lucky winning fathers. I was hoping but had to wait until later when I got a piece of cherry pie while eating lunch with family at the Ashland Goldan Corral!
I might add here that someone finally figured out a way to get me into the choir as all men were invited up to sing. So of course, I joined them.
It was time for the Pastor’s message. He shared a story about Adam and spoke of Noah, saying the word of God talks of him being a righteous man.
The Pastor referred to Abraham in saying that your faith will be tried and tested. He said, Isaac was directed to pack wood for fire. The basic thought is that Abraham trusted the Lord. Each of us will be tried and tested, the devil will test and tempt you. Some things may be hard to understand or we may not want to understand.
God was working on a process. He is not as concerned for our happiness as he is our holiness.
Don’t think you are so close to God, that he won’t call your hand on it. Such was the case when Moses disobeyed God and when the time came he was not allowed into the promise land. If God was so strict on Moses, how will he respond to us?
The Pastor then referred to David, humble, respectful, loving, and faithful to repent. The bible says he was a man after God’s own heart because he continually repented. As David wrote the entire book of psalms he was honest about the highs and lows in his life.
Pastor Hagen said that just because God may not seem to answer a prayer doesn’t mean he doesn’t love you as it is with a parent who doesn’t buy their child a new car. He pointed out as to what has happened to discipline and work? After all, it was God who said that we will work to the sweat of our brow. I might add that anyone who has ever watched the movie Sergeant York would know that. The Pastor summed up the sermon by saying your sins and mine will be washed away by the blood of Jesus. We can live every day due to the power of his resurrection. In a summary prayer the Pastor said, “this is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice in it”
Then for an important conclusion to the service, the cherry pies made by Sandy Conkle were presented to five lucky fathers, the oldest and youngest father. The winners were Adam McClintic, Lode Ramey, Pete Taylor, Clarence Conkle and Greg Craft. As we were preparing to leave it was nice seeing my High School friend Renee Tipton!
And to the person who spotted us and said to someone, “I wonder if they the people going around to churches and then writing about them?” Yes, yes we are! God bless…. See ya in church!
Reach Randy Rucker at Ohiorancher5@gmail.com.