Friday, March 22, 2013

Preach to me

My buddy Rob Dickson down in sunny Florida called to tell me of a preacher who had some common-sensible things to say.  I thought that was a refreshing change, so I asked his name and said I'd check him out.

You know I'm a little dumb, right, and slow on the uptake?  When Rob said the man's name is Ronnie McBrayer, something in my noggin clicked on Scott Player, a former NFL player nicknamed Punty McOneBar, because he was a punter who shall forever be remembered as the last player to wear a one-bar facemark, so we could all enjoy his mustachioed glory.  I was surprised to think he had drifted into preaching, because I was sure he was still down on some 38-yard line, holding for a long field goal attempt by Phil Dawson.

So, once I figured out just whom we were speaking of, I checked out the interwebs and found that McBrayer calls himself a storyteller, scribbler and seeker, who publicly announced that he was leaving religion to follow Jesus.  That must have ruffled some feathered hats down at the First Holy Temple of the Sanctified Brethren, but Ronnie points out that God has a great sense of humor, and so he preaches with that in mind, a little common sense, a little laugh now and then.  And instead of worrying about who might have been doing what, he spends time working with Habitat For Humanity, and did a lot of work on Hurricane Katrina relief.

Yes sir and yes ma'am, as long as there are suits with two pairs of pants (and we spill mustard on the jacket) there will be proof that God has a sense of humor, and again, not to turn this daily whatever into something deep and ponderous, but if you believe that God created Heaven and Earth, then you have to figure He invented humor, and comedy, and the good old guffaw.

I have to think that people like Ronnie McBrayer are on to something.  My early church days were filled with some of the stuffiest, most judgmental and opprobrious souls ever to put on wingtips and Enna Jetticks.  Ronnie's stance seems to be, let's try to lead good lives here and worry more about ourselves than judging that family up the street a bit.

And he shares life lessons.  Here's a link to one of his syndicated newspaper columns in which he talks about the phrase "getting your goat."   It's interesting to me as a lover of words and I hope you like it too.  He not only talks about that expression but also touches on the need some people have to put on a big front, driving a fancy car or hiding some fault or shortcoming, again, worrying too much about what Harry down on the corner says.  

What I get from McBrayer is what I have gotten from other worthwhile speakers:  Harry is not living your life, nor is her responsible for it.  And what's more, while we're so worried about what Harry thinks of everything, Harry is thinking about his next meal and really not at all about our new car.  Unless we use it to bring him a pizza.

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