Twenty-eight years ago I moved to Cleveland County . Upon my arrival, the pastor
I worked with at that time , Terry Cagle at Pleasant Ridge Baptist Church, took me on a tour of the area as is customary when arriving on the scene . As we cruised the countryside I was told where members of the congregation lived and points of convenience that I needed to be aware of . I will never forget when we passed a particular landmark on our journey Terry looked at me and said ,”That’s Mike’s tire store ….you’ll get your tires there”. It came out much like a command more than a suggestion, but I took it in the spirit it was intended and interpreted as a valuable suggestion .
I have been a patron of Mike’s place for twenty-eight years now, and I have no regrets from heeding Terry’s suggestion . The tire store has proven to be one of my favorite places to go . In fact, when I haven’t been there in a while the guys will usually insult me by saying ,”Andy just comes to get tires now”, implying that I don’t have time to socialize and sit around the warm stove in the wintertime eating peanuts with the guys .
Well the other day Nicole contacted me and said , “Andy would you take me to that tire place where you get your tires “? Having been confined for a couple of weeks I jumped at the opportunity . I reacted much like a Chihuahua that had just learned what R-I-D-E meant . I couldn’t contain my joy at getting out to one of my favorite places to enjoy good fellowship with friends .
I will conclude with three lessons learned during my time of recovery .
- Don’t underestimate the importance of going for a ride. When the pandemic subsides let me encourage you to see if a homebound person might want to accompany you on an errand .
- Never forget the blessedness of friendship and fellowship . I am reminded with every trip to my mailbox that I am blessed with a beautiful church family who cares and that I need to go eat peanuts at the tire store more often .
- And finally , there is no substitute for the simple pleasures .
I pray that you might have an uncomplicated and peaceful Christmas and thank you so much for all the prayers , generosity , cards and encouragement during my time of recovery.
Have as blessed Christmas season.