I’m a pebble. Jim is a pebble. Roy Denton is a pebble. You are a pebble. As we move across America, Jim on foot, me behind the wheel, we have a conversation with a few here and there. We are going to some very small places, remembering New Mexico: Red Hill, 1; Encino, 82; Vaughn, 450. (A growing trend.)
In Encino, we were driving around to find a place to stay when we realized we were being followed. They motioned for us to pull over. It turned out to be the mayor and his wife and they asked if we needed help. I asked him if it was pretty obvious. They chuckled. They then led us to a spot behind the village (not city) hall where we could park for the night and even fill up our water supply. Thank you, Mayor Phillips.
The next evening we found ourselves in Vaughn. They had a small market, a school, a senior citizen center, a Catholic Church and a First Baptist Church, two gasoline stations, (none of which Encino had), but no propane to sell. I talked to the lady at the market in Vaughn and she said that she was born there, lived there all her life and wouldn’t live anywhere else. When I asked her what she liked about living there, she said it was quiet, you work then go home – no hustle and bustle. She told me that they have to stalk up on food because any grocery store of any size is an hour and a half any direction.
She told me about the Oak Tree Inn, a rather nice place, and Penny’s Diner which were contracted by Pacific Railroad. Vaughn is the crossroads, or should I say tracks, for East to West lines and North to South lines. We started counting trains when we left Encino on our way to Vaughn and gave up. I think we had a dozen by 8:00 a.m. Pastor Roy Denton, about whom I’ll tell you in a bit, said that there is a train every 15 minutes. I believe it. Railroad employees come and stay at Oak Tree Inn to work on the lines.
Now for Roy Denton, Pastor of the First Baptist Church. He worked in the corporate world for 39 years and the last few years, served as an evangelist on the side. The corporation decided to release several before they hit their retirement year – saved the company money but not really very kind! But it happens all the time. He and his wife just recently felt that they were called to go to Vaughn to serve – each called separately. Roy won’t reach the masses but he has one pebble to drop. And so do we.
We aren’t reaching the masses, but we are meeting people, one by one. We don’t know all that it means in these lives and how far the ripple effect will be. I do know that Pastor Roy needed to have someone to talk to. It’s not easy. His wife, Amy, hasn’t even been able to join him because she has to sell their house in Georgia. He needed to know that God cared enough to send someone to just him. He did. And He does. Our heart goes out to Pastor Roy. We pray for him and his wife – for their ministry, that they sell their house so Amy can join him. Also, he asked to pray that the people will trust him, the newcomer. You see, there are people in Vaughn that need to know Jesus.
So this was our pebble to drop. That was our job. God’s job is to guide the ripples. Is your pebble insignificant? No. Just make sure to not grip it in your hand. Go ahead and drop it.
Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Colossians 4:5