Have you ever seen a five year old boy scold a preacher in the middle of a sermon? Only my brother could pull this off.
To understand this story you need to know that in Lithia Springs way back in the 1970s there were only two rather large Baptist churches in town. One Baptist church had Preacher Beaver, and we at Lithia Heights Baptist had Preacher Weaver, and Preacher Weaver, you see, was a very dynamic preacher. He liked to talk real low, and then he would burst out with a shout or two while pounding on the pulpit – to keep people from falling asleep – or at least that’s what I think..
I never really listened to the sermons while I was sitting there. Mostly I just sat there and daydreamed about what the rest of the day would be like. I didn’t really need to listen to the sermons. My mom was always content with the kids just being quiet in church, and that was fine with me.
Both of my parents liked for us kids to be quiet. Quiet while we were playing. And most definitely quiet while we're were eating dinner. I guess this was a particular challenge because Mom and Dad were constantly telling us "Hey, we're right here. You don't have to yell."
Now my brother, you need to understand, thought all rules, no matter who stated them, applied to everyone. And if my dad declared a no hollering rule, well, it applied everywhere, with no exceptions.
One Sunday I was sitting on the front pew with Kent Nelson while preacher Weaver gave his usual pounding "Gotta do what I say" sermon.
Everything seemed to be going normal for a Sunday morning including the part of the sermon where Preacher Weaver began to raise his voice.
Suddenly I heard, "HEY PREACHER!"
I turned around just in time to see my brother standing in the church pew, head and shoulders above everyone else, with his hands cupped around his mouth like a megaphone (to make sure everyone heard) continuing his sentence "YOU DON'T HAVE TO YELL, WE'RE RIGHT HERE!"
The next thing I saw was my brother being yanked down by his legs like a giant gator had pulled him under. I swear…it took a full minute for all of his hair to fall back down onto his head.
I spent the rest of church service conjuring up an excuse regarding why I didn’t have a brother anymore, because I was certain my mother had killed him on the spot.
My brother, on the other hand did not understand what all the fuss was about, for he was only informing the preacher of Dads new no yelling rule.
Well I did get to keep my brother.
Mom did not have to go to jail for killing him, and, believe it or not, Preacher Weaver did quit yelling in his sermons.
I guess he didn’t want to be verbally smacked down in front of everyone by a five year old ever again.