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The Master’s Walking Stick

CR and Jackie Hill Congratulations on 47 years of ministry

On Sunday, June 5, 2011, we paid tribute to my dad, Dr. CR Hill, Jr. for his 47 years of ministry. Dad will be retiring from the pulpit on June 19, 2011. Among the thoughts shared by family at Sunday’s worship hour, my husband, Jim wrote a poem in my dad’s honor.

Anyone who knows my dad knows that he has a love for the outdoors. Hiking, fishing and biking are among his favorite past times as well as carving things out of wood. Jim’s poem does a beautiful job describing my father in his ministry and how dad has touched the lives of others over the years. It is a privilege and honor to be able to share Jim’s poem with my readers.

The Master’s Walking Stick

It was a scene I had witnessed

Had seen it many times before

Southern gentleman, knife in hand

Shavings scattered on the floor

 

The branch, it was long

He had notched the first dimple

Intent on his task

Making it all look so simple

 

(He says) It is raw material so far

There’s a lot to be done

Tis a work that’s in progress

Whittling out here in the sun

 

The stick at this point

There are reasons I choose it

I must know the ways and needs 

Of the one who will use it

 

Will it be slight

Fully meant for display?

Or will it be used

For trails, day after day?

 

He sized up the stick

With potential in sight

It’s now up to the Master

To bring the function to light

 

As I watched this take place

Something started to click

There is a parallel here

between this man and this stick

 

This man at one time

was hard and pointy as a fork

It took no genius to see

He was a raw piece of work

 

As a child in our army

He was chosen to be

The first line of defense

Between the Eastern Bloc and me

 

He came home from his tour

Reunited with his home

It was not long after that

He had a family of his own

 

Tours and family made him tough

He persisted to stay

And just like that old stick

He was formed in God’s way

 

When he returned state side

He labored then he saw

The Master had a plan

And he answered the call

 

The Master continued his work

Refinement takes time

With perseverence and grace

He’s been polished to a shine

 

God’s walking stick is finished

Work is done, so we think

It’s been worn but worn well

A career seems but gone in a blink

 

C.R.  You have given your best

So we ask what is next?

What’s the Master have now

For us to add to this text

 

Many may ask

Is this stick laid to rest?

To this I say “No”

There are still trails yet to test

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