As a young minister, I was asked by a funeral director
to hold a grave-side service for a homeless man, with no family or
friends. The funeral was to be held at a cemetery way back in the country,
and this man would be the first to be laid to rest there.
As I was not familiar with the backwoods area, I became
lost; and being a typical man did not stop for directions.
I finally arrived an hour late. I saw the backhoe and the crew,
who were eating lunch, but the hearse was nowhere in sight.
I apologized to the workers for my tardiness, and stepped to the side of the open grave,
where I saw the vault lid already in place.
I assured the workers I would not hold them up for long, but this
was the proper thing to do. The workers gathered around, still eating their lunch.
I poured out my heart and soul.
As I preached the workers began to say 'Amen,' 'Praise the Lord,' and 'Glory'!
I preached, and I preached, like I'd never preached before: from Genesis and Ecclesiastes
all the way to Revelations.
I closed the lengthy service with a prayer and walked to my car.
As I was opening the door and taking off my coat, I overheard one of the workers saying to another,
'Lard Jeezuz b'y, I never seen nothin' like that before
and I've been putting in septic tanks for twenty years.'
Thanks Bob A.