Pastor Xavier Adkins seemed a little out of sorts one Sunday morning. He came scurrying up to the pulpit after the announcements a little out of breath.
“Sorry about being so rushed this morning,” the middle aged, rotund preacher offered as he straightened his tie and adjusted his lapel microphone.
“I couldn’t find my cell phone. As you know my wife is on her way back from the Intercessory Prayer Conference in Atlanta, and I wanted to check in on her before we got started today.”
Pastor Adkins was a very funny man, accidentally. He had a special talent of making people laugh and not know how he did it. But, he had a great sense of humor and could laugh at himself. That really helped when he was being “comedic”.
“I want to thank everyone for bringing all of that fine food over to the house while the missus was out of town. In fact, we have received so much, I wanted to call and tell her not to worry about supper when she gets back. There’s plenty left.”
The pastor started flipping through his Bible and arranging his notes on the pulpit. But, he just couldn’t start preaching yet.
“You know, it really drives me crazy when I can’t find something. I searched high and low for that little phone.”
A few of the church members nodded their heads and smiled.
“I mean, it wasn’t in the house, in my car, or my office. It’s driving me crazy.”
Most of the congregation was used to his tales of absentmindedness. It was part of what made him so endearing.
Mrs. Adkins would always say the biggest challenge each Sunday was getting her hubby to the pulpit in one piece. Once he was there, she knew all would be fine.
Pastor Adkins never kept his suit jacket on for very long when he preached, but he usually waited for about the halfway point of the sermon to take it off. On that morning though, he started unbuttoning it early.
“I know you all are waiting for me to get started and quit ranting about my phone, but I always preach better after I hear my wife say she loves me.”
Most of the flock “awed” simultaneously at the touching sentiment. Pastor Adkins was also a very sweet, loving husband and family man; another quality everybody loved about him.
As the preacher carried on about his cell phone he paced back and forth.
Finally he walked back to the pulpit and looked like he was going to start preaching. But, he backed away again.
“You know, I just can’t get the go ahead in my spirit to start. Why don’t we say a quick prayer for my wife and then I’ll begin. I promise.”
Before he could get the first word of the prayer out of his mouth a cell phone started to ring. Pastor Adkins cocked his head to left as he tried to figure out where the ring tone was coming from. He slowly stepped away from the pulpit as he was trying to tune in on the ring’s location.
It was then the pastor put both of his hands on his hips. In the process he pulled back the bottoms of his suit jacket exposing his beltline under his rather large stomach.
The laughter began in the front row and spread towards the back like a wild fire.
Finally Pastor Adkins tilted his head downward and closed both of his eyes as his face started to turn red. Slowly he moved his hand to his belt and unhooked his cell phone.
“Hello. Hey, sweetie. That’s just the congregation laughing. I’ll explain later. I know I should have turned it off, but I couldn’t find it. Where was it? I’ll tell you later. Yes, I’m preaching now. In fact I was just talking about you. I’ll tell you later. Yes sweetie. Love you too. Bye.”
When the laughter finally died down Pastor Adkins started laughing and the entire church roared again.
“Well, that was a quick answer to prayer. God is good, isn’t He?”
The preacher shot a sideways glance up towards Heaven.
“I was going to share about spiritual obesity today, but I think this morning’s object lesson is adequate enough. Amen. Now let’s break early for lunch. I’m hungry.”
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