Some objects come into our lives, not to stay forever, but so we can take care of them until they move on to their next destination.
That was the case with something that moved on from my life this week. I gave away a pulpit that has been occupying a corner in my home for a few years.
The pulpit was handmade by a relative named Jake. When I knew Jake, I was a kid and he was an old man with shaky hands and poor hearing. He lived like a pauper although he was believed to be quite wealthy. Jake was a humble man, gentle and evidently very talented.
He made the pulpit for the Athens Nazarene Church many years ago. When the church closed and sold, someone salvaged the pulpit and gave it to one of my relatives. I’m not sure but I think it was passed around in the family a couple of times before it came home with me when it was up for grabs at a yard sale.
I had no plan for it, no need for it, but hated the thought that it would be sold outside the family or to someone who wouldn’t give it a good home.
And then I got it home and realized that it really had no place in my house. But I wasn’t ready to part with it and had no one to take it anyway.
So I kept it safe. That was my job. I kept it safe until I was ready to part with it this summer. We were planning a garage sale and I compulsively knew that it was time for it to go. I posted a picture on Facebook and it found many admirers at the sale but there were no takers.
Truth be told, I didn’t want to sell it to just anyone and really wanted it to go to a church but had no leads.
So I posted it on Facebook Marketplace and waited. After just a few days, I received a message from a pastor asking if it was still available.
He came to get it on Saturday along with his youth pastor who will put it to good use. It was a gift for their church’s youth ministry. After he chatted with my family for a bit, I learned a little about his church – the MacFarlan Community Church in MacFarlan, West Virginia. It’s a country church and looks like the kind I would pull over to photograph, the kind that I go chasing on Saturday morning adventures.
And I knew that I had found the right home for Jake’s pulpit.
I was at peace, seeing it loaded up and moved down the road. It went to a church where someone will polish it up and speak to a new generation of believers. If inanimate objects have life, I am certain this one was exuding joy and pride at the prospects of soon being back to work.
The folks of MacFarlan should look out. Their church has a fascinating story and you never know when I might wander that way to photograph their church and to share that story with all of you!