Presbyterian Church and earthquakes
Like many, a good deal of my training in advertising and working derived marketing with smart clients.
I had one client many years ago in Weatherford that taught me, “If you don’t have anything to say, keep your mouth shut. If you do have something to say, holler louder than anybody.”
Its no secret Cushing’s First Presbyterian Church has had its share of challenges. Although it’s had challenges, it’s always been a very caring and loving bunch of people. It has kept the faith, held on to the teachings of Jesus rather than being influenced by Presbyterian Church USA, which tries to change the Bible in order to fill more pews.
In a sense, the Cushing First Presbyterian always had something to holler about.
Example: I feel at home when I’m at that church. How many people are looking for a church where they can simply feel comfortable, just as if they were at home?
Although it’s comfortable, don’t mistake that with complacency. We’re comfortable but all know we’re sinners and trying harder, everyday, to trust Jesus more and follow His example better.
The church has had guest pastors who have given us all they had. Candidly, it’s just not been enough to holler about.
Well; we have one now!
Months ago, Kevin and Vicki Jean, Edmond, came to fill the pulpit as guest pastor for a Sunday morning. Apparently he liked us and we certainly like him and his wife.
He is now the church’s “steady guest pastor.”
I don’t know his age for sure, but he seems to be in his 40s. He’s got a bit of a raspy voice and has energy in abundance. One can tell Kevin has not always been a pastor.
He has been down the road just like the rest of us. He struggles daily, just like the rest of us. He’s real.
He gives an energized sermon that’s always on point and on time. It could be that he’s that organized or it could be that he’s just that good.
Kevin and Vicki love our community, love our church and are excited for Jesus.
Every once in a while, Holly Tichenor, our pianist and organist, will play one of the numbers she chooses to prepare our hearts and minds for worship and she, as my friend Dale Cotham used to say, “Put something on us Ajax won’t take off.”
It’s not unusual for me to make a quick comment like, “Top that, preacher.” He won’t top it but can sure reach it.
To summarize, Kevin Jean is a gifted preacher. There’s not a person in Cushing that could set through one of Kevin’s sermons without remembering what he said, even on Monday morning.
They would know, without question, that they’ve been to church and leave feeling a little more energized about their spiritual walk and loving God and others.
We’ve got a big beautiful comfortable church, we are blessed to have Holly sharing her God-given gift with us each Sunday and now we’ve got Kevin Jean putting a message on us Ajax won’t take off. We absolutely have something to holler about.
Won’t you come join us?
I’m sorry, I can’t help it. I have to put another Ziglarism on you. Zig Ziglar, in one of his motivational messages, you know the ones where he sounds a bit like a Southern Baptist preacher, said, “Go to church. It’ll give you peace of mind now. And it just might keep the heat off of you later.”
EarthquakesThe Oklahoma Corporation Commission shut down disposal wells within six miles of the 5.0 earthquake epicenter, injecting thousands of gallons of wastewater everyday into the Arbuckle formation. When injecting stopped, it seems earthquakes stopped.
It is unfortunate that downtown Cushing and many homes in Cushing had to be hammered by earthquakes before corrective action was taken. The action was taken by OCC and companies drilling wells complied. At least that’s good.
In the meantime, Cushing property owners have sustained millions of dollars of property damage. What are we to do?
One person, close to the industry, responded with, “Fix it and move on.”
Everyone has their own story. Our story is that we once had a beautiful and historic downtown building showing the amazing masonry craftsmanship of the day. The building won’t ever be the same. We are repairing the building cosmetically in a manner that we hope will make the building more earthquake-resilient. We have no assurance there will be no more big quakes.
If the only repairs necessary on our building were those to restore it cosmetically, we’d fix it and move on. That is not the case.
Serious structural issues very expensive to fix will disrupt our home and business in the process. Whether one can fix and move on depends on the limit of damage and checkbook. Many who were harmed don’t have the checkbook for the simple solution.
What are we to do?
We have watched the movie, “Erin Brockovich,” several times. We enjoy the movie. Still, we are living in a lawsuit-happy society that has gone too far just as those drilling wells have gone too far with wastewater injection wells.
We don’t like bringing lawsuits against people but sometimes, when so many were damaged so badly and nobody steps up to take responsibility, something must be done.
It’s not too late for everyone involved in this suit to join hands and do what’s right, that is, right for all concerned.
When an industry’s practices jeopardize public health and welfare — when the industry has become too one-sided — it has gone too far. Individuals, who have been damaged want compensation, truth and solutions such that we won’t be revisiting the same issue somewhere else at a future date.
We’re in Cushing. Cushing is an oil town. We love energy here. We want energy companies to be incredibly successful.
As much as we love them, causing a 5.0-magnitude earthquake that causes so much damage is crossing the line.
The people who have been damaged will not be treaded upon. All we have ever or will ever ask is, “Do the right thing.”