One of Jimmy Buffett's most popular songs is "Son of a Son of a Sailor." I was thinking about that this week as I was writing a sermon on the church as a family. I thought about all the family members (Copes and Bushes and other relatives) who have helped form my life. Echoing the song's title, I'm the son of a son of a carpenter. I remember these things about Forrest Cope: 1) He was a hard worker. People described him as a carpenter who did good work, kept his word, and crossed racial barriers (before others were willing to). His rugged hands were testimony to his long hours. 2) He loved to study the Bible. I remember how he loved to fill out those old Gospel Advocate quarterlies! He knew each of Paul's missionary journeys by heart. (It isn't fair they he knew WAY more about the Bible than I do about carpentry. I didn't get that carpentry gene.) 3) He loved my grandma and all his kids and grandkids. I think he had a nickname for almost all the grandkids. 4) He loved to eat . . . a good match for Grandma's culinary skills. 5) He never lived in a large house or drove a fancy car or received an advanced education. He was content with a simple life of faith and family. My life has been shaped by two carpenters: one, a hard-working grandfather in SW Missouri; the other . . . well, you know.