A Promise of Blessings on the Home of the God Fearing Man
(Posted with permission from his family)
(For Garland Shook… My Friend, who is with Jesus)
Memories of Home Visitation - Garland’s Favorite Scripture.
Psalms 128:1-6 - Blessed is every one that feareth the Lord; that walketh in his ways. 2 For thou shalt eat the labour of thine hands: happy shalt thou be, and it shall be well with thee. 3 Thy wife shall be as a fruitful vine by the sides of thine house: thy children like olive plants round about thy table. 4 Behold, that thus shall the man be blessed that feareth the Lord. 5 The Lord shall bless thee out of Zion: and thou shalt see the good of Jerusalem all the days of thy life. 6 Yea, thou shalt see thy children's children, and peace upon Israel.
Psalms 125:1, 2 – They that trust in the Lord shall be as mount Zion, which cannot be removed, but abideth for ever. 2 As the mountains are round about Jerusalem, so the Lord is round about his people from henceforth even for ever.
Psalms 124:8 - Our help is in the name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth.
Psalms 121:5-7 – The Lord is thy keeper: the Lord is thy shade upon thy right hand. 6 The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night. 7 The Lord shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul.
Psalms 91:1-4 – He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. 2 I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust. 3 Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence. 4 He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler.
Psalms 91:15, 16 – He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him. 16 With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him my salvation.
Psalms 92:13 – Those that be planted in the house of the Lord shall flourish in the courts of our God.
Psalms 126:5, 6 – They that sow in tears shall reap in joy. 6 He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.
As I think of Garland… Just My Thoughts… in no particular order.
*He was very private – but took / and invited us in.
*He was very quiet – but spoke often of his family and his work as a corrections officer.
*He made it clear that he had integrity and that he never abused those under him.
*He was adamant about other officers under him following the right procedures.
*He believed right was right / wrong was wrong – and did not compromise on gray areas.
*He loved his wife, loved his job, loved his children, and smiled when he spoke about them.
*He could just cry when he thought of his grandchildren.
*He always spoke positively to me – showing me more honor than I deserved.
*He was an encourager. Praising every sermon / message that I gave and invited Jamie and I over often to feed us.
*He never bad mouthed a fellow member, never bad mouthed anyone including those that were criminals under him. *He stated that they were paying for their crimes and that he treated them as regular human beings. – I marveled realizing that some of them did horrific and terrible things.
*He never cried wolf or pitiful me… He never asked for sympathy. He always smiled at me at first glance, the way I smile at my daughter when I see her.
*He gave me his time… his love… his cucumbers, stakes and ropes for my tomato plants…
*I would say to him, “Brother Garland, I’m praying for you and I want you to pray for me”. He would grab my hand and say, “I have prayed for you”. – And he meant it!
*He did not let on that he had cancer. He came to church when he was sick… came after treatments, came in bad weather, showed the strength of 5 men and had more courage than any man I’ve ever met.
*He had a God given intensity to persevere under the worse of circumstances and left such a high mark that his sons will have to really get their act together to even come close to the manner of man that he was.
*He was my friend. A prayer partner… A church member that I could count on. A true mans’ man who loved God, country, and family. He loved his preacher. His pastor… He loved me.
*He made me to love his sons. If they could measure half of what he was, they would be great friends to have.
I am honored… to know him the way I did.
I am honored to have been his pastor.
- And as sad as I am to see him go. I am happy for him because I know beyond all reason or doubt… that he is home. Waiting for the rest of his family.
**To those that take the time to read this, I sincerely pray, that you can bless others with your life the way that Garland Shook blessed mine. Wisdom is a gift that only God gives. It cannot be obtained by experience or in worldly education. God gave this gift of wisdom to Garland and having known him has made me a better man.