Our second son, Keithen, and family recently moved to Paducah, Ky. It is a bit further than their previous residence, so Terry and I were glad when Jessica called to ask if they could visit here with us over the weekend.
It was a useless question for sure — we were very glad for them to come. Any time is a good time when any of our family can come to visit.
Before they arrived, I got my four-wheeler out and parked where it could be seen. After all, the grandkids might want to go for a ride if they saw it sitting out, I thought. Five minutes after getting here, Zaven, Kinsley and I were on our way for a ride on Hanging Rock Road. They like riding with Paw Paw. Jessica is somewhat leery about her children riding threesome with me. But, I was mindful to ask her permission before we left. I promised to be careful.
The next evening, I was outside with Zaven. I said, “Let’s get on ‘Bert’ and ride up the front yard hill to the other side of the house. I can show you my trail I made down through the woods.” Little did I realize what would happen.
My usual approach to mount the bank to the front yard hill has been typically from the bottom of the driveway. But, this time I mounted the bank coming down the driveway. The angle was wrong, for sure. In the process, the bike turned over. I landed in the driveway on my right shoulder with my left foot caught underneath. Zaven rolled off and over me, and landed chest down on the pavement.
As he brushed himself off, I told him to go up to the house and get his daddy. In the meantime, passersby began pulling off the road and coming to help me. I lay there for a moment assessing if I had any injury. After all, any injury to my chest area would not be good considering the surgery I had June 28. Two nurses on the scene gave me a check. Other than some bleeding from my arm and leg, I was OK.
But, it was for my grandson for whom I was most hurt in my heart. I had taken him on a short joy ride, and it was I, through a bad misjudgment, who caused a crash with him on board.
However, the picture I see behind this personal incident is even more alarming as it involves the spiritual life of the Church here in America. Like the rest of the country, the Church is on a certain joy ride. Basically, the people of the Church are enjoying good and easy times. We have some money saved. We eat good. We ride good. We have a lot of good fun.
But, we are not insightful enough to acknowledge the error we are in the process of making. Neither do we consider that we are taking our grandchildren to the coming crashes that will eventually take place. For example, one day the stock market is going to crash and stay crashed. One day violence will overcome peace, and there will be no recourse. One day freedom as we know it now will be drastically downgraded.
The point is how the contemporary Church is ignoring God. The Church is not leading the way concerning Bible-based principles our country should be following and practicing. The people of the Church are too silent when it comes to distinguishing the good of God over/against the evil of Satan. The people of the Church are too hypocritical when it comes to living like Jesus Christ the way we should.
The present failure of the Church to lead in repentance, revival and restoration with God is going to cost our country God’s presence and special blessing. And, our grandchildren will, oh, most certainly pay the price from the crash incurred from our misjudgment.
I later saw Zaven with his mother at the crash site, evidently pointing to something. Come to find out, he was telling her, “This is where my face got smashed into the pavement.” I may have lost my daughter-in-law’s confidence in my playing with her kids. It would be deserved, I think.
The Rev. Ron Branch is pastor of Faith Baptist Church in Mason, W.Va.