Remembering Paul Fife
When you look back at the life you’ve lived so far, do certain people come to your mind? Do you remember the people who had a meaningful impact on your life? On Thursday, December 1, 2011 the world lost such a Godly, amazing man who was a great encouragement to me over the years. Paul Fife volunteered with the youth group when I was growing up at First Baptist Church Smyrna.
One thing I will miss greatly about Paul is his sense of humor. He helped make the awkward teen years more bearable. I remember one year we had a talent show and they asked Paul to be a part of it. They asked him what he was going to do and he told them to put him down as “miscellaneous.” When it was his turn, he got up on stage and recited (off the top of his head) a poem about a mysterious woman named “Ms. Allaneous” – all of this he created right there on the spot. We were all laughing to the point of tears.
Another example of Paul’s sense of humor involved a guy I knew named Chris. Chris was new to the church and being the new guy, everyone wanted to introduce him to the people at the church. Chris was “introduced” to Paul at least 10-20 times by various church members and each time Paul played it off like they had never met. They would say “Paul, have you met Chris?” and his response would always be “No, I’m sorry…Chris was it? So nice to meet you!” Those of us that knew they had met were biting our lips trying not to laugh and make the person introducing them (for the umpteenth time) feel uncomfortable.
What I loved so much about Paul was that he was funny, but he knew when to be serious. He would ask you the tough questions you needed to hear. I remember hanging out with him and a few other youth, just sitting in the church parking lot on the hood of his car talking about life. Paul was so easy to talk to and made you feel loved. You knew you had his undivided attention. You also knew where he stood on his beliefs – he loved Jesus and he wanted you to love Jesus as much as he did, but not in an in your face, beat you over the head with a Bible kind of way. He genuinely loved people and making a difference in their lives.
Paul, you will be missed but I know you have all the angels laughing right now.