Glory House

 Chapter 24 

Not far from the house that the Philpotts lived in on Knocknaboul Way we started another Christian house. It was a cheaply built home about twenty years old, with four bedrooms, two baths, and a garage (which meant a fifth bedroom to us). It was located on Los Colindas Avenue, almost exactly where I later crashed my new Honda road bike head on into a pickup truck. Son Vern was riding on the back. Neither of us were injured too badly, but the motorcycle was totaled. 

The rent on Glory House was manageable and, as usual, I signed the lease—one of about a dozen of them at that point. The house leader was a fellow recently arrived from New York—a small Jewish man whom I will call Jonathon, and he was a wild-eyed Pentecostal, to put it mildly. He had been involved in a leadership capacity in some church where I suspected he had run into trouble because of his excesses. However, over time he tuned things down, and I grew to like him. 

Jonathon started dating a young lady in the fellowship, and I think I performed their wedding ceremony. The couple’s first residence was Glory House, and it wasn’t long before they put in a request for an item they needed to keep the house spiffy—a new vacuum cleaner. I approved the purchase, and the money came out of funds collected from the residents. 

All went well for some period of time, other than a steady stream of folks moving in and out; other than that, I was satisfied. 

One day, however, I received a call from the landlord, who informed me that he had received no rent for several months. I called the house, but no one answered the phone, so I walked down the street and thought I would handle the situation directly. 

One of our good praise team guitarists, Steve Smith, answered the door, but he didn’t know where Jonathon and bride were, so we knocked on the door of the master bedroom and found the place empty. Not an article of theirs was found, nor a note, and they had told absolutely no one that they were leaving. My first thought was the new high end Kirby upright. Sure enough, it was nowhere to be found. 

I was mad about the vacuum cleaner for days; I was sure the newlyweds had absconded with it. Yes, we had enough money to cover the rent, but the vacuum symbolized the betrayal we had experienced. 

At an elders meeting some weeks later the mystery was solved. Bob Burns, who also lived at the house and has been my dear and enduring friend (he’s had a lot to endure to be my friend) told us the rest of the story. While he was living at Glory House, he saw something that made him suspicious about the vacuum cleaner and the young couple. They were way too attached to each other. While no one was around, Bob grabbed the Kirby and put it in the trunk of his beautiful Chevy Impala. So it was safe, and we all felt a lot better. 

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