"Jimmy, you shut your Godd-er, your filthy mouth, before I shut it for you!" The words fairly flew from Glenny's mouth before she realized it.
Whew! This was a side of her that God had been warning me of this afternoon. I could see she had embarrassed herself, and I hardly knew what to say. So I simply said nothing, looking down at my plate instead.
Jimmy sneered at her, and lifted his eyebrows, looking in my direction. Apparently he had made his remark knowing he would get that kind of reaction from her. I silently thanked him for clueing me in. I might have been drawn in to a close relationship with her before discovering that side of her.
However, Jimmy came on in and sat down at the dinner table and the meal went on. I asked him how school was going.
"Oh, all right I guess. I make mostly good grades. It just bores me most of the time. The classes are just too easy. I have some great pals, too. I'm starting up a rock band with some of them. I play the drums. Maybe you could come hear us, if you're gonna be around for a while."
"Well, I guess I won't be able to hear you. I'm leaving town on Monday."
Turning to Glenny I said, "I'm sorry; I hadn't had a chance to tell you yet. I just decided this afternoon. I feel a great urgency to try and find my friend that I'm looking for. I've already purchased my ticket. That reminds me, I'm going to the little church across the way from here in the morning. Would any of you care to go with me?"
They all looked at me with the stare of a deer caught in the headlights of a motor vehicle.
Glenny's father said, "Uh, no, we don't believe in God or organized religion. We are Atheists, Zeb."
I laid down my fork, having just lost my appetite.
"May I share the plan of Salvation with you all?" I asked.
"No, you may not. We don't want to hear any of that clap-trap religious stuff," he replied.
I looked questioningly in the direction of each of the members of the family and each one in turn, answered with a negative shake of the head.
"I guess I'd better be leaving," I said. "Thank you for the delicious meal. I will be praying for you all. I really need to go now."
"We don't need none a your prayin', just save your breath," commented the old man.
I knew they needed it more than they realized. "It was really nice to see you again, Glenny. I'm sorry; I can't stay any longer. You take care now. If you decide to come to the church in the morning, you will be welcomed. Goodbye."
Putting on my coat and hat, I took my leave of the house, mentally shaking the dust of it from my feet.
(To be continued)