“Thamar” (By Doug Fincher)

July 10, 2017 - In the fall of 1962 I became Pastor of The First Baptist Church of Mauriceville, Texas. On my first Sunday at the church, Deacon Thamar Dickerson walked into my study and as he held  his thumb in front of my face, said, “Brother Doug, my name is Thum-mar Dickerson”…and for an obvious reason, I never forgot his name. I never forgot his squirrel dog “Yeller’s” name, either. “She can’t bark, he said. “But she’s the best squirrel dog in the State of Texas.” And after a few hunting trips with Thamar, there was no doubt that he was right.

Thamar and I became close friends and he took me to all his best hunting and fishing spots. But we had a bitter disagreement at a committee meeting one night and he began missing church services. When I told Deacon Homer Bishop about the problem, he said, “When an eagle’s wing is broken, it may learn to fly again but will never soar as high.” I was just getting over a bad case of flu when the doorbell rang one morning. It was Thamar. “Want to go squirrel huntin’ today?”, he asked. ”I hear they’re stirring at the “S-Curve.” When we got to the canal lateral, the foot log that we always crossed on had fallen in and the water to wade was thigh –deep. “Get on my back”, Thamar said. “You could catch pneumonia.” As soon as we crossed, Yeller ran wide open into the woods and within minutes returned, jumped up on Thamar’s legs and began whining. When Thamar said, “Where is he, Yeller?”,  she led us into the woods to a white oak tree with a fat fox squirrel just waiting for us.

By God’s grace, the eagle did fly again…and soared as high as ever. And during my remaining six years at Mauriceville, Thamar and I hunted and fished often together. He crossed the Jordan River many years ago and did not cross alone. Thamar added many happy memories to my life. He was a good friend.

…..a good friend, indeed.