Thursday, October 3, 2013 —
Beyond our relationship in church and the friendship we cultivated over many years, Mike played another role in my life. During a very dark and difficult time, I sought out Mike Taylor for legal advice. When I explained my situation, his response was not to tell me he should represent me. Instead he said, “You need to hire Bill Tucker. And you need to do that now.” I did not know anything about lawyers or hiring them, so Mike called and made an appointment for later in the week and he went with me to the meeting. That day, because of Mike, I gained a lawyer and ultimately a new friend in Bill Tucker, the honorable Judge Tucker these days.
More recently since I have moved to my new position as Executive Director of Stanly Community Christian Ministry, Mike and Susan have continued to affirm me by faithfully supporting SCCM with their financial gifts and their prayers. They have been a constant presence of affirmation in my life for almost eleven years now.
Through more than a decade, I have dined with the Taylor family both in Albemarle and in their home in Chapel Hill. I have shared many conversations with all five Taylors, Mike, Susan, Will, Sam and John, and I have always felt inspired by their love for one another and their passion for knowledge and faith. Mike, the son of Baptist missionaries, was one of the greatest men of faith I have ever known. He, as all Christians should, believed that one’s faith impacts everything, one’s choices and how one treats others, one’s politics and one’s daily lifestyle, one’s very being intertwined always with the quest to be more like Jesus.
Many of those days when we shared lunch, Mike and I went first to Rock Creek Park and walked the trail before we broke bread together. Those are good memories. This past Sunday morning, when I heard that Mike had left this earth, I added one more thing to my to-do list when I get to heaven. I look forward to taking a walk with Mike again, and then dining together in the Great Banquet Hall of Eternity. Amen.
Roger Thomas is executive director of Stanly Community Christian Ministry.