Hermey___RudolphA Story

Near Stanton, TN, where some of my relative lives, there once was (and probably still is!) an old, run-down, falling apart tavern that sits on the banks of the Hatchee River.  For many years, that old bar has stood on that corner between Brownsville and Memphis.  It has been wrecked several times.  It has burned to the ground on more than one occasion.  It has changed names and owners, colors and even shape more times than I can remember.  But for all its rebuilding, repainting, and renaming, it has not once improved in appearance.  It still sits in an awful location on the river bottom.  Still, no matter what time of evening you drive by it, there are always cars, trucks, motorcycles, and even bicycles parked around it, crowded into every possible nook and cranny of the parking area.

I recall years ago, when I was a teen, hearing my dad try to explain to a friend of his, who lived in the area, exactly where our family lived.  Suddenly, his friend interrupted him and said, “Oh, I know where you’re talking about.  It’s by that old bar on the corner!”

“That’s it!” my dad said.  Then, with a hint of bewilderment in his voice, he said to his friend “I wonder why that place is always so busy.”

“Well,” his friend replied, “I suppose it’s because at that place everyone is accepted without question.”

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There is a striking similarity in the attraction of a bar and that of the Church at its best.  The end result is the same.  In both places, fellowship is offered without question about one’s past or present.  Everyone is accepted.  All are included.

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