He Strikes Again

Stephen 3

Our Amazing and Most Honorable Son

A few years ago, I wrote a book entitled: “The Sayings of Noah: The Four Year Old Theologian” by taking the sayings our grandson Noah would spout out to me or to the group he was around. What I failed to remember was that for a couple years Shirley was keeping a journal on the sayings and deeds of Stephen entitled: “He Strikes Again.” Allow me the fun of honoring my son, Stephen Bruce Martin, by using this collected information. Most of these were when this young theologian was five years old.

A Prayer Before Meals:
God is grape, God is good. Let us thank him for this food… We are all fed, give us Lord our daily bread. Amen.

The Hornet’s Nest:
There was a hornet’s nest on the wall of the local golf shop. Stephen seeing this and not hearing the explanation asked his father: “Is that a behind?” Meaning beehive.
(5 yrs. old – Murphy)

Being Pregnant:
Stephen and his cousin Chris were playing being pregnant and his grandma Martin asked him what pregnant meant? He answered rather straightforwardly: “Pregnant is when you are cross-eyed and can’t see straight.” He may have been more correct than we realize?
(5 yrs. old – Hendersonville)

Who’s Your Daddy:
Stephen was sitting with a friend, Mark Kilpatrick, at church one Sunday. Mark asked him where his father was. Stephen told him his daddy was the man at the front of the church. Mark told him: “That’s not your daddy, that’s my preacher.”
(5 yrs. old – Murphy)

What Did You Say:
We were out riding in the car one Saturday taking in all the sites around Murphy. As we passed over Hiwassee Dam, this voice from the back seat cries out: “Dam!” Immediately Shirley asks him (Stephen the speaker) “Where did you hear that word?” He pointed and said: “Hiwassee Dam.”
(5 yrs. old – Murphy)

No More Bible Stories:
Stephen and his father were discussing why he didn’t want to hear bedtime bible stories any more. Steve had made it the practice to read him a Bible story every night to help him start learning the great stories of the Bible. Stephen’s reply was: “I want to hear more funner stories.” No more bedtime Bible stories.
(5 yrs. old – Murphy).

Runaway To The Movies:
It happened one Saturday afternoon. Scottie Turner (son of Rev. Frank Turner, the preacher at Murphy First UMC) had played with Stephen until in the early afternoon when he had to go home. Stephen was unhappy that his friend had to go home. After supper, he wanted to go to Scottie’s house and Shirley told him he couldn’t go. Steve went off to school, she started washing dishes, while Stephen went outside to play. I went to check on him and he was gone. The first place I went was to Scottie’s and there he was. Scottie had gone to the movies so Stephen decided that he would go to Sky City shopping with Jean (Scottie’s sister). I told him he could not go because he went off from home without telling me. I went in to look at Jean’s cat and when I came out he was gone again. I looked all over the place, called everyone I knew, and drove around in the car looking for him for almost an hour. I called Steve at school and he came home to help look for him. Finally, we called the police and within an hour they found him… (just before they were getting ready to drag the river across the road).

It seems that he had started walking to the movie and happen to meet this boy who was also going to the movie. Stephen just tagged along and the boy paid his way into the movie. The Police called and Steve went and picked him up at the police department. When they arrived at home, Stephen went into his room, while Steve explained what happened. I heard this noise coming from his room sounding like something being hit repeatedly. After a moment, he came into the kitchen all bent over, holding his legs. He looked up at me with this really pitiful expression and said: “Mommy, tell daddy I gave myself a bad spanking.” Needless to say, we were extremely thankful – beyond words – to have him home safe. He did get that bad spanking he was talking about, and a long talk from his dad. It was the last spanking he received from his dad.
(5 yrs. old – Murphy)

It Is All Hand Made:
Stephen came home from school telling about a field trip to the Campbell Folk School. He told us that “Everything out there was made out of hand.” Meaning made by hand.
(5 yrs. old – Murphy).

Braces On Your Teeth:
Stephen was watching a television program where this little girl had to wear braces on her teeth. He asked Shirley if he was going to have to wear “…bracelets on his teeth when he grew up.”
(5 yrs. old – Murphy)

Ready For The Spanking:
Stephen had done something and he thought he was going to get a spanking. It had been a while since his deed and still he hadn’t received the dreaded spanking. Noticing this he asked his dad if he was going to get a spanking for what he had done. I told him “No, I don’t think so. Maybe you have learned the proper thing to do. Stephen went to find his mom and told her: “Since I am not getting a spanking, I guess I can take off these extra pants.” It seems that while waiting for the spanking he put on and extra pair of blue jeans. He was being prepared.
(5 yrs. old – Murphy)

Mow What:
Stephen came in one day and asked his dad if he could help “mow the law?” Meaning lawn.
(6 yrs. old – Midland)

Quitting School:
After picking Stephen up from school one day he announced that “he was going to quit school.”  I asked him why and he said: “I don’t like their ice cream.” To this day, he still likes ice cream.
(6 yrs. old – Midland)

Personal Prayer:
Stephen’s first prayer of his own design not from rote but from his heart was: “Lord, I hope we all stay together and live long lives and will you help me find my spelling book.”
(7 yrs. old – Midland)

Saying Stephen got a Little Wrong:
“Robin Hood and his merry men.” “Robin Hood and his Married men.” (5 yrs. old)
“The Seven Dwarfs”.  The Seven Drawers”. (5 yrs. old)

Words Kinda Mispronounced:
Snake = Sneak
Lake = Link
Hillbilly = billhilly
Butt = Bottom
Sports Car = Sporch Car
Big Truck = Big Tuck

This little guy spent all his growing up years sitting by his mother’s side every Sunday listening to his dad preach. In the early years while I was in college/seminary and serving two churches, most of the time, he and his mom would attend both worship services. Some Sundays I would look back and he would have his head on his mom’s lap asleep. That was ok… this is tuff stuff for a little guy to endure… especially twice. But I have found out that this young man was listening and processing all this religion, theological, grace-filled love of God in Jesus Christ talk and seeks to put it into practice everyday in every way.Steve - Stephen - the laugh

He is a good Christian person… man… father… husband. He gives. He serves. He is present. He thinks. He continues to grow. He is smart, compassionate, thoughtful, practical, real and humble. He treats others with respect, kindness and understanding. We are honored, proud and grateful to be his parents… for we have been truly blessed by his high-plane living.

Thank you Stephen for being you… We love you, man.

Grace and Peace

Steve’s Author Page


Stephen 33Abby - BaptismSteve Shirley in the patch 2

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