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Ray and I have known Martin and Lillie Fay almost as long as we have known each other. When John, Bethany, and Mary Evelyn were minors, we had named Martin and Lillie Fay in our will as the people we wanted to take care of our children if something happened to both of us. There is no higher honor or greater responsibility we could have given anyone than that.

Martin and Lillie Fay were our friends when we lived in Mississippi. We worshiped together.  We saw them fall in love with each other. We saw them get married. We entertained college students with ridiculously silly skits together. They bought a house down the street. We could walk from our house to their house in about three minutes.

We missed seeing Martin and Lillie Fay when we went back to Oxford for a visit last summer, because they were in Texas looking for a home near their daughter. When they made the decision to leave their beloved Oxford after 43 years and move to Texas to be with their daughter, Lillie Fay’s mother Fay decided to move with them. By the time we returned to Mississippi for our friend Bob’s funeral last month, they had already moved.

With great gratitude, we arrived safely home from our two-week-long Texas Tour last night. We had had nothing to do with planning this tour. Our son and business manager John did that in cooperation with Texas Home Educators. Our new staff member Donna handled much of the communication with our local hosts.

You can imagine Ray’s and my surprise and delight when we learned several weeks ago that our last stop was in Rowlett, Texas, the new home of our dear old friends.

After our last presentations on Saturday, . . .

At the Christian Educators Resource Center, Rowlett, Texas
At the Christian Educators Resource Center, Rowlett, Texas

. . . we had the great joy of going to Martin, Lillie Fay, and Fay’s new home to spend the evening. Lillie Fay had prepared a delicious homemade Mississippi supper. As I was remembering the supper later, I had a comfort food realization that every yummy dish was like eating at one of those great church potlucks we used to enjoy so much in Oxford.

The next morning we met Martin and Lillie Fay, their daughter and her husband, and Lillie Fay’s mother at church. When it was time for us to head toward Tennessee, we stood in the foyer of the church with Sunday School classes already beginning. None of us wanted to say goodbye.

God is kind to give Christians sweet fellowship with fellow believers in Christ. As Paul told his beloved brothers and sisters in Philippi:

For God is my witness,
how I long for you all
with the affection of Christ Jesus.
Philippians 1:8


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