When someone decides to terminate their life we are filled with questions not judgments.
Rarely do I miss an opportunity to worship on Sundays and rarely can I remember a time when Gary Bond didn’t occupy the pew right in front of me.  When I read his obituary on Thursday, April 31, I was surprised by all the degrees and civil service jobs  he had held in his brief 59 years.
Gary was a kind, never demanding the limelight kind of Christian, straightforward and sincere.  I related most to him in church via church business sessions concerning finances or membership.
I can remember serving along with him and his wife Janice as we weeded a garden lot at the Never Fail Baptist Church probably in  2008—a mission project sponsored by FBC.  Helping others seemed natural for Gary.

Then came the shocking news that their eldest son had been sent to prison.  That brought James and John, Gary’s grandsons  into my life.  The two of them were very disturbed over their dad’s imprisonment and had a very difficult time adjusting to attending Sunday school and church on a regular basis.  To say they resented coming is a given.  At that time I was working in the children’s department at our church.  I found myself at times with crossed feelings.  On one hand I understood the turmoil they were acting out was a manifestation of their inner turmoil.  On the other hand I didn’t like the disruption they created for every one else.

I truly wanted to relate to them in a positive way and provided things on their level to occupy them during the worship hour.  Then the boys stayed gone for a couple of years and when they returned they seemed calmer and in control.  That pleased me greatly.

A long line of people went through the line of people expressing their condolences to Janice, Samuel and Jeremy.  When it finally became my turn Janice hugged me and broke into tears, “Pray for my sons.  Pray for my sons!” she asked.

I can’t and I want ever forget that request.  Jeremy and Samuel. you’ve got my ear and you’ve got my prayers.