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Recognizing first responders

We all recognize the important work that first responders perform. From law enforcement to fire departments, EMTs, 911 operators, the term ‘first responder’ encapsulates a wide number of professions, and the jobs performed by the individuals in each of those professions are vital to our community.

Often, we take the jobs these first responders perform for granted, and only truly appreciate their work when we are in need of their assistance. However, this past Sunday one church took time to say a proper ‘thank you’ to those who serve our community.

Oakside Baptist Church held a special church service Sunday afternoon to celebrate and honor first responders from across Troup County and beyond. The service, which was the first of its kind at the church, had representatives from a plethora of agencies, including the Troup County Sheriff’s Office, the Troup County Fire Department, the LaGrange Police Department and the LaGrange Fire Department as well as a host of others.

“The phrase I’ve used is, ‘you guys serve us 365 days a year. We want to serve you this one day for a couple of hours,’” said Oakside Baptist Church pastor Tim Tidwell.

The event was well-attended and well-received by those first responder agencies, who were thankful and appreciative of the recognition. Members of the congregation at Oakside were in attendance to honor those guests and thank them for their service as well. The entire afternoon was a successful showcase of the congregation’s appreciation of the work these brave individuals perform.

It can be easy to forget how much a simple meal or a ‘thank you’ can mean to anyone in our busy, daily lives. A small gesture of thanks may seem fleeting and easily forgotten.

However, those gestures matter to those who receive them.

While we all recognize the importance of the jobs these people perform on a day-to-day basis, oftentimes we simply expect these jobs to get done and never stop to offer gratitude.

Oakside Baptist Church truly demonstrated a servant’s heart this weekend, and we thank them for honoring those first responders, who serve our community so selflessly.