Daily Walking with God

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Walking in the Word

Plant City's First Baptist Church

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The day Doug caught his first (and I think only) tarpon on Tim's boat. (Pictured left to right: Gibber, Tim, and Billy)

Oh what a night! 

With Hank Williams, Jr. and old country music tunes playing in the background, stories pouring out more than whiskey in an old western saloon, and watching and listening to about a dozen old friends reminisce about memories with their buddy, Doug, the night was a treasured night.

These boys had all grown up together.  Seeing Tim, Billy, Brannon, Eric, Wayne, Brian, Chris, Kyle, and many more friends gathered together, brought back a lot of memories of my own as well. What a unique bond they all have. One guy mentioned how, “Doug was like the glue that kept us all together.” It’s not often that you see guys who have either gone to grade school, junior high, and /or high school together still close friends after all these years, but you do here in this town.

Most stories would start with, “Remember when Gibber…”.  And most stories wouldn’t be allowed in the pulpit at Doug’s service either.  Laughter was followed up by lots of tears. (Stories weren’t the only thing flowing this night.)  Hugs and “I love you” were done and said on more than a couple of occasions.

At one point the music got muted and the abbreviated thoughts were spoken with the men standing around the kitchen.  I was listening from another room.  I was so proud of my man for the words he shared (bleeped and all).  And if you ever need a blunt-country-preacher, Tim would be the one to call.

Tim rattled on about a few precious things, and then he said this:  “I know that Doug was a Christian and I will see him again one day in Heaven.  I hope we all will.  Now, I won’t go and get all preachy on y’all, but guys, get your shi** together.  God Bless the Gibber.”

You’d have to know this group of guys to know how appropriate those words were.  “Get your act together” just wouldn’t be the same.  From the next room, we girls were laughing through the tears at how Tim put preaching and cursing in the same poetic sentence.

I pray that lives will be changed, more bonds will be bound, and more memories will be made through the lives that Doug touched while here on earth.  I can’t wait to hear Brother Tommy Warnock share stories, the word of God, and the plan of salvation at Doug’s Life Celebration.

Ecclesiastes 4:9-10, “Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. 10 If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble.” 

John 15:12-13, “This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you.13 There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”

Proverbs 17:17, “A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for a time of adversity.”

In honor of Doug, here’s a video of one of his classic country favorites, Hank Williams, Jr.’s song “Kaw Liga”:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=knrpeVAy8y4

Love the ones you love!  Show them.  Tell them.  Love them now.

Do you need to “get your act together”?  Please click here, and follow it up with talking to someone about it.  (Feel free to message me if you need to.)

I pray God’s abundant love and blessings for y’all.

5 Responses to A Night of Memories with Friends

  • Peggy Gibbs. (Doug's Aunt Peggy) says:

    Thank you Stephanie for sharing that “friends” night with us. It was very emotional for me to read. I watched Doug and most of these boys grow up, marry, have children that grew up…attain their goals and continue to be that closer than just a friends group. I have seen their love for Doug as they have constantly been with our family as we waited and waited at the hospital for Doug to turn around and start improving. Doug knew they were there even though he could not respond. You ladies and your guys, all Doug’s friends knew how to love him and lift him up. He felt your love, he felt your prayers . God bless you all for being there…for Doug and for our whole family. You each one so special. I wish I could have heard Tim getting “preachy” ! We will be with Doug again. Thank you Stephanie. Love, Peggy
    (Aunt Peggy)

    • Judy Bassett says:

      Honey, so well said. Would have been neat if all had been recorded. The guys could sit back later have a great time reminiscing the reminiscing. I know what it feels like to have such close friends. My class is still very close. They are my second family. More important they are all Christians. Give Tim a big hug for me and tell him I am so proud of him and his stand for Christ. He is a blessing. Love to all.

  • Brian West says:

    Thanks, Stephanie! We all love each other. Unfortunately, our lives have taken us in many different directions, and we don’t get together just to be together. With a little effort and some prayer, that may change. We’re not perfect. None of us are. But I hope and pray that our friendships can last the rest of our lifetimes and for eternity in Heaven, before God, our Father.

  • Donna Scarcella says:

    Thank you for sharing this, touched my heart.

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