No More Tea, Thanks

It was a beautiful Sunday in summer. The drive out to the little country church building was pleasant but uneventful. Skies were blue, the grass and trees were a bright green. Horses and cows were in the meadows. And birds were singing in the trees. In those days no one had air-conditioning in their cars. We drove a little slower with the windows down and the sights, sounds, and smells added to the joy of the morning.

There was nothing much unusual about the service. We always had to wait ten or fifteen minutes past starting time. It was customary to wait till all the straggling “regulars” got there.

As usual I had the “scripture reading,” led the opening prayer, preached the sermon, “waited at the table” and finally offered the closing prayer. The brethren were fine, good people, but the men were most reluctant to participate much in public worship. Some brethren in those days would come right out and say, “We got brother                comin’ down to hold services for us. ”That meant I led every public act except the song service. They knew better than to ask me to lead singing!

After services we were invited to take lunch with a very hospitable older couple. Much preparation for the meal had been done either the day before or that morning before services. In just a few minutes we found ourselves surrounding a very delightful meal. There was an abundant supply of vegetables, at least two meats and homemade bread. And then we all finished up on cobbler, pie, or cake.

As everyone finished their meal, my wife and the lady of the house began to clear the table. When our good hostess returned from the kitchen, she went around the table pouring all the leftover tea from all of our glasses back into the tea pitcher! With that she held up the pitcher and with some satisfaction declared, “Oh good, we have enough tea left over for supper”!

Suffice it to say, that evening my wife and I both decided that just a glass of water would taste good. We