At ten years old, I was picked up by my grandfather Johnny Temple Hayes to go to church one fine Sunday morning. I was so excited to spend time with him but also anxious. He was always angry when my parents weren’t going to church, and he did not like having to come and get me. When we were driving away, I looked back, and my dog was following us. I shared with my grandfather that I had to get him back to the house. Oh, boy, did he become furious.
As I ran the dog back down the road, my grandfather drove in reverse to meet me, and he accidentally hit me and knocked me in the ditch. He made me clean up, and we went to church as though nothing had happened. He did not have the wisdom to understand that he could have given me a spiritual lesson right there on the side of the road. Church is more than attendance in a building; it is a way of life. Many people in all parts of the country do not seem to have that inner wisdom, and therefore the people around them die a little. Church is more than a place you go to; it is the inner wisdom from which you live. A true church will teach you to live by the principles it represents wherever you are.
Excerpt: When Did You Die?