More Than Me

Reading Time: 4 minutes

A big, thick walled, glass jar with a narrow neck was a constant commodity in Dad’s room during my formative years. I had to be about 10 or so when the first one of these showed up and I absent mindedly tracked the steady flow of copper pennies and silver coins as they began taking up the jar’s internal space. I actually remember very little of  how long it  took to do so, maybe a  year, but I do remember clearly the first time Dad told me to lug the thing to church.

Dad rarely went to church. Mother’s attendance followed the tenor of her marriage and during the jar filling era she was busy cooking enticing Sunday lunch so she didn’t go either. My brother and I faithfully walked the 6 blocks or so almost every Sunday to Victory Missionary Baptist Church. Brother Neil, 6 years my junior, followed my lead to attend Sunday school but not worship.   Worship scared me too much. He probably could have handled it.

“Take the jar to church when you go on Sunday. Leave it somewhere so they can find it,” Dad told me, when he couldn’t get anymore into the neck of the jar. “You are