What would Mr. Joe say?
Mr. Joe Jones
This photograph is of my dear friend, Joe Jones, better known as Mr. Joe to the community of Oriental, North Carolina. This quaint sailing town in eastern North Carolina sits on the Neuse River where the Creech family has owned a weekend home for years. The 'River House' (as it is so fondly referred to ) is a sacred place to all of us and has rewarded us with some of the best memories this family has been blessed to share.
As for me, one of my most cherished memories is of Mr. Joe. Every Friday he would come by and mow our lawn knowing that around 6pm we would all pull up to enjoy the weekend. He wanted the yard perfect for our arrival.
While I appreciated his attention to the yard, what I loved more were the conversations he and I privately had whenever he was around. Over the years he advised me on love, patience, gratitude and joy ..... all of which he was FULL of.
Oh my goodness, what would Mr. Joe say about what is going on in our country today?
As with most people who we become soulfully bound at the heart with, we know long after they have departed exactly what they would say to us.
I can hear him now in his slow, southern slang addressing my concerns for our countries crisis.
Life ain't always pretty. Life ain't always fair. But Life is always precious.
You got's to move on in love. Move on in forgiveness. Move on with your head up high. Move on loving your enemies, just like the good Lord taught us.
Is it easy? Naugh, it's not. But we got's to love each other through this.
If I hadn't believed what I am sayin' rights now, I would have never made it this far. I've told you about times I was so scared I didn't think I'd see the light of day. You know what I'm talking about. But I did make it and I loves everybody because I know deep inside we's all the same.
Don't you worry yourself Ms. Connie... God is working. You watch and see."
With that I think he would have done is wink one of those sparkly eyes at me and then turn and walk to his truck.
I love and miss you Mr. Joe. If by chance you were to run into George Floyd in heaven, give him a tight hug from all us all and tell him he did not die in vain. His own 6 year old daughter just today announced on National TV that 'My daddy has changed the world'! You and George sit down and have the kind of talks that you and I shared so many times.
To my teacher, my inspiration, my spiritual mentor, my friend... Mr. Joe.