Monday, November 21, 2005

IF - Free

Allow me a little childhood flashback on this one....The first thing I thought of when I saw the topic for this week, was/is a song sung by the greatest Southern gospel singer of all times (IMO) - Vestal Goodman.

My family was very Southern Baptist and as a result we attended church every time the doors were open and that didn't just include our church...we'd travel - preachers, singers, missionaries, camp meetings, didn't really matter....on occasion we saw The Happy Goodmans, a gospel quartet, and I was always thrilled when Vestal (in true Southern gospel diva style) would wave her white linen hankie during an especially emotional part in her song - I don't know if it was to help get God's attention or what ;) She completely filled a room with her amazing energy and big voice...George Jones says she saved his life after a bad fall from the wagon years ago...

So as an adult, my one religious/spiritual tendency is my attachment to gospel music...every Saturday night we watch The Gaither Homecoming Hour and Vestal and her husband Happy (both of which are now dead) are seated in these big throne-like chairs on the front row...and if we're lucky, Vestal will break out in that big alto voice with the inspiration for this illustration,

"Thank God I am Free"

Thank God I am free, free, free
From this world of sin!
Washed in the blood of JesusI've been born again!

Haleluia, I'm saved, saved, saved
By His wonderful Grace!
I'm so glad that I found out
That He would bring me out
And show me the way!

I hope that her after life is all she hoped it would be, because I think she truly believed what she sang about....after all that, hopefully these drawings capture a little of the woman I remember :)

P.S. no personal religous beliefs are implied or intended ;)