Take me to church

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If you’ve been following along this week, you know we’re in Joplin for the Guilty By Association truck show at 4 State Trucks, home of the Chrome Shop Mafia, the past couple days. We got here early to have some work done, and have once again thoroughly enjoyed the hospitality of the Martin family.

The annual Bryan Martin/George Parker show picThe annual Bryan Martin/George Parker show pic

Last year was our first in attendance, and we immediately decided it is, hands down, one of the best truck shows there is. This one is all about the trucker, and the Martins and their staff make sure every trucker here knows that.

Bryan, Bryce, Lisa, Jessica and Linda Martin are not only busy with their regular business (and business is good), they’re all coordinating and overseeing the monumental effort it takes to put on a show. I can’t begin to imagine the details involved. Just getting 300 trucks parked has got to be insane, not to mention making sure everything and everyone shows up on time and does what they’re supposed to do. You’d think they would be too busy to stop and talk, but they always do, and you have their full attention. It’s not a little wave and nod, it’s eye contact, hugs, handshakes and conversation. I admire that so much about this family, and it’s probably the reason business is so good.

Bryan and Lisa MartinBryan and Lisa Martin

I mentioned to someone yesterday that this show is like a revival for me. This is where we come to fellowship and be thankful we have the opportunity to do so. It’s very humbling to see several thousand people who have common interests come together to forge a bond over those interests. This is my church, it’s where I feel closest to what matters, which is family and friends.

We may not always agree — it really is a fact that you can ask the same question of 50 truckers and get 50 different answers, but at the shows, that’s all forgotten. We visit, we have fun, and we thank the Lord for blessing us with the opportunity to do so. If that ain’t church, I don’t know what is.

A huge thank you to the Martin family and their incredible staff, I wish I could name each of you individually, because you all make this what it is, and it’s fantastic.