Prior to serving as pastors, we had many ministering opportunities. Of which, would have us traveling the east coast of the United States. Our family sang together and I would hold revival meetings or Sunday Services, whichever, the case would be.
Prior To Serving As Pastors, Wife Purchases Piano
Prior to serving as pastors, my wife, Margie didn’t work outside the home. As I insisted she be home to care for our children. However, later on she decided, she wanted to purchase a piano for our youngest daughter (Rita) and have her learn to play. My wife made that happen. She started work at the elementary school, just up the road from our home. Working in the cafeteria, she was able to be home before the children went to school and was able to be home when they returned home from school. She also paid for piano lessons. All the girls agreed, Rita would be the one to take lessons. But Rita, was so musically inclined on her own, she discontinued the lessons and self taught herself. The other two girls learned to play some, as well.
Miracle of Drums
Another miracle came, as God was preparing our family for ministry. My son, (Jay) desired to play the drums. Just so happened, a man down the street from us, had a complete set for sale. This set was a Ludwig Professional Drum set. Jay and I went to this man’s house and he showed them to us. He said he had been playing them in night clubs for years, but decided it was time to quit. The drums all had carrying cases and they were beautiful! I asked him about the price, and he said $250.00. I told Jay to come on and let’s go home.
As we started to leave, the man said, “How much do you have to buy these drums”? I said, I’m sorry but I only have $25.00.” The man thought for a moment and said, “I’ll take it, the drums are yours”! I was so shocked, I was shaking, as we loaded them in our station wagon. Speaking of the station wagon, that’s another miracle of God!
Feeling Crazy – Prior To Serving As Pastors
One day, I felt God speaking to me about relieving my debt of a car payment of our beautiful 1964 Ford. I felt God was going to allow me to purchase an older, clean (I thought) Studabaker, that I had seen. A man I worked with wanted my car and said he would give me another car for my equity in the Ford.
When I came home and told my wife about the deal, she said,”Are you crazy?” I knew it didn’t make any sense, but I really felt that God had spoken to me. I looked for the papers and after finding them, I left to trade my car. My “friend“, gave me a beat up Chevrolet with steam coming out of the radiator and running on 5 or 6 cylinders out of 8. As I drove into the driveway, my wife saw this piece of rusted junk. She ran and fell on the bed and cried. I felt real bad, but it was too late to change it.
Jay and I drove the car to see about the Studabaker. It was not there anymore. I really thought, I had missed God terribly and my wife had it right, maybe I was crazy!
Miracle of Station Wagon
Later that week, Jay and I were sitting on the front porch steps, when a former neighbor who owned a car detail shop, came by. He said he wanted me to tune his guitar. As we sat there, and I worked on his guitar, he said, “Who’s car is that”?, pointing at the Chevrolet. I said, “It is mine!” He said, “I have a beautiful Mercury Station Wagon, that I have advertised for three weeks and have not had a call on it”. “Do you want to come look at it?” I said, “I don’t have to look at it; it’s mine!” “I don’t have the money right now, but I am expecting a refund from the IRS”. “When it comes, I could pay you then”. He said, “Okay, that’s fine”.
He took the Chevrolet, and gave me the keys and the title to the Mercury. This vehicle had low mileage and had red and white trim, with leather seats. The rear seats still had paper covering on them. The old gentleman who formerly owned it, kept record of every oil change and service performed on it.
The day came, when I received my refund from the IRS. I went to my former neighbors’ house to pay him, and he said, “You were right, it is your car”. “You don’t owe me anything”. He was a Christian, and I supposed that God spoke to him as well. That Mercury was just right for carrying our sound equipment for many miles as our family sang in various churches, as well as our own home church.
While we were growing up together, on occasion, I would declare a “Barnes’ Holiday”. Which meant, I would take a day off and the kids wouldn’t go to school.
My wife would pack a picnic lunch, consisting of bologna, loaf bread, mustard and a container of Kool-Aid. I would place a couple of cane poles and container of worms in the car and we would go to a pond to fish. Jay (my son) and I would wade out into the pond up to our chest area. The girls would swim and splash around between us and the bank. We would eat lunch and have so much precious time together.
We all still remember those wonderful days. Our daughter-in-law, Cyn-dee was so disappointed, when realizing the Barnes’ Holidays ceased after we accepted the position of Pastors of the Tampa Foursquare Gospel Church. As she had not yet been able to enjoy those days as a Barnes, as those days happened before she became a Barnes, even though she was married to Jay, prior to our serving as Pastors.
This is episode #6, watch for more to follow. Also, if you haven’t read previous post related to “My Dad’s Life Journey”, be sure to read the post listed below:
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Find Joy In Your Journey!