I had the opportunity and distinct pleasure to attend a prayer breakfast this week at the First United Methodist Church.
The Rev. David Player, their pastor, was a tremendous host. I’ve only been in town three weeks and I already knew him before the event. He was warm, welcoming and has what I’d call a purposeful fire within him for the profession that chose him and, even more importantly, for the people in the community.
To me, that fire wasn’t something that wanted to burn out of control, but it was warm and welcoming like coming in from the cold and shaking off the night air in front of a comforting fireplace.
There were a lot of spiritual things going on that morning.
I knew there were nice people in the community, but those in attendance at this event took things to an entirely new level.
Of course hearing “Amazing Grace” played on the flute by the Altus High School Band Director Mary Runyan was nothing short of incredible.
I know she’s a professional musician, but hearing the way in which she caressed the notes coming from the instrument during a song of praise and floating on the air across the room toward our table was nothing short of a spiritual experience.
I later learned they are called “That Altus Band” signifying their show-stopping performances. I hope to get the privilege to hear them play someday soon, maybe some Big Band music so I could do the waltz, foxtrot or swing.
Kirk Humphreys’ story was not just a tale, but more of a spiritual journey. He had some practical things to keep himself grounded – like agreeing with his wife to be home by 6:30 p.m. each night, no matter how busy and hectic work became as a mayor or business executive.
But there was also his cold and lonely description of what if feels like when the phone stops ringing after you lose an election or retire from business.
Old friends sometimes don’t know what to say and many others want to move on very quickly to those who won the election or the next guy paying the bills at the company.
So, Humphreys shared what he had learned about the important things in life – those that are kind, true and spiritual.
I looked around the room during the event and there were already a dozen or more people I had met. Some elected officials and some not. I could feel the warmth of a small community.
I don’t know what your faith story might be. What would you would call the goosebumps and rush of the non-existent wind I felt. Some might say it was intuition, mother nature or simply community roots.
You believe what you want to, but I think it was the Holy Spirit. He was there and made his presence known.
Reach Eric Steinkopff at firstname.lastname@example.org or 580-482-1221 ext. 2072.