Sunday, 28 September 2008

I dreaded Saturday!

I had been dreading yesterday, Saturday, all summer long. The last Saturday of September is the day papa has to clean up his "toys" and put them away for the winter - Precious 1 (Malibu Ski boat) and Precious 2 (pontoon). All week I was focused on Saturday and was not looking forward to it. It is a lot of work and not much fun - plus it means the end of the boating season. I was happy that most of the work is done by other family members who came to help - Thank you all of you that helped - still I wish the day would never come - almost.

How is your next week looking? Any days that you are dreading because you know whats ahead? Well don't - don't do like I did, you have a greater possibility of missing God's blessing if you are not looking for his blessing. I missed one and didn't even know it - until it was too late. I was going to go with my daughter to pick up pizza and missed that one-on-one 30 minute father/daughter time. I was "too busy" barking orders and worried about time constraints. That evening it hit me - "I blew it!'

But God had another blessing for me and this one I did not miss! Darla had a part in this as well.

At 5PM - after a long day and trying to get the last boat wrapped up, my niece informed me that someone was stopping by to see me. She had heard the discussion a few minutes earlier at another house here on the campgrounds. She did not know who they were but thought I should know. Shortly a car drove up and a man got out who I did not recognize, then a 9 year old girl got out! Tears began to flow - it was Brittany! You will have to go back to papa's older posts (July 21, 2008) to find her story - but papa has been praying for this girl all summer. I had plans to find this girl and give her a Bible. she is living w/grandparents because of "unfortunate" parental issues. I finally met her grandparents - very nice people.

When Darla and her family came on Labor Day they brought a brand new children's Bible with them for Brittany! I had hoped she would be here yet this summer season - but I gave up. I gave the Bible to Brittany's pastor who was here on the camp last Thursday. Today, Sunday, she should have that Bible in her hands! Thank you Jesus! I explained to Brittany that her pastor has the Bible.

That dreaded day you are concerned about? God has some blessings for you that day. Make sure that as you get up that day that you have surrendered that day to him - ask him to help you not to miss the blessings of the day!

Thursday, 25 September 2008

Baby Dedication

The picture you see is the baby dedication of my grand daughter - this happened several years ago. The ceremony is when the parents make a public commitment to dedicate the child to God and to raise the child in accordance with God's word.

Last Sunday our pastor dedicated a baby. he asked three important questions.

question #1: Mom, dad - do you promise to do your best to raise your child as Christ commands? If so, answer 'we will'.
Question #2: To the rest of the family - Will you do your best to assist these new parents to raise this child as Christ commands? If so, answer 'we will'.
Question #3: to the church congregation - same question as #2. if so, answer "we will'.

I wonder how I am doing? I have had to answer all three questions. I had to answer question #1 in 1969 and 1971. I had to answer question #2 in 2000 and 2001 - my grand children. Question #3 - still on-going. Yep, I wonder how I am doing? - Wow, I even have a responsibility to your children!

Sunday, 21 September 2008

Buckley Elm! She was a beauty!

She was a beauty! she was the National champion American Elm tree. The picture was taken in the year 2000. the trunk was 23' in circumference and her canopy was 112' x 112' - a huge tree, She was thought to be the largest American Elm tree in the world.

Last Thursday I drove by the old tree and was shocked. I had not noticed before but she is gone. She has been destroyed by Dutch Elm Disease (DED) at the ripe old age of over 300 years. Her old trunk is still partially there - but is of no value. The picture here shows her already impacted by DED, her foilage is minimal.

As a child and youth I use to see her often, I lived not too far from her and rode horseback within eyesight of this queen of elms. Now - gone. So sad! As strong as she was and and as majestic as she was standing there in all her glory - disease destroyed this queen. She was known as the "Buckley Elm" and a search on the internet will bring up photos and history. Gone also is my youth and now my struggle to keep my existence on earth begins as well.

Some of us will be fortunate enough to leave a mark in history, but how will we go out? We need to fight the disease of sin and never allow it to take us or our loved ones out. My life and my choices impact my loved ones - God forbid that I let sin in my life be as destructive as DED.
The Buckley Elm looked like it would last forever - however it is now gone. I hope today that I work just a little harder to makes sure my legacy lives on and that I stay Christ focused.

Wednesday, 17 September 2008

Prayer Request !!

Some times life throws us curves we didn't expect. Jesus sometimes takes us down a new path that doesn't seem as nice as the path we would like to choose. Friends of ours just became first time grandparents - their married child just had their first child born early and the child is Down's Syndrome. This child is God's child as well and please pray that all will adjust to this unexpected new path that Christ has taken them down. He truely loves us. Please pray with these families with mama and papa.

Sunday, 14 September 2008

Tornado Warning ! Take shelter immediately!

Most of my blogging family knows that papa and mama live on a church campground. besides all the other facilities here there are approximately 175 homes like ours that people call home. We like it here - love it - we feel secure.

Yesterday at 4:45PM that security was shaken. Suddenly the camp warning siren went off - a Tornado Warning for the area had been issued - a funnel cloud had been sighted. I already had the TV on and was aware of the warning. I wasn't overly concerned, it wasn't that close in my opinion so we stayed on the main floor. Besides the Notre Dame vs. Michigan football game was on. The siren stayed on as a warning for about 20 minutes - after a few minutes it didn't bother me, i just put the siren noise in the back of my mind. I did notice that Carol (blogger CDC Version) was driving her vehicle on the street warning people to take cover immediately. I waved through the front window, I don't think she saw me. Her husband Paul is the director for the camp.

I have heard the warnings before, we have lived here 14 years, no tornado's here yet. I think we can relax. Yesterday is gone - the threat is past.

Kind of like the attitude we have about Christ returning someday. We have heard the warnings, almost like sirens in the background. No rush! No worry - it hasn't happened - yet.

Thursday, 11 September 2008

John Deere vs. Scotts ! Scotts the winner!!

This is a Scotts Tractor Mower! Excellent mower! This mower belongs to our neighbor lady. She is a widow and papa mows her lawn for her. The mower is a 16hp/42" deck - powerful and a good cut. Mows very even - the best I have seen - very comfortable and great quality. I believe it is about 10 years old, I have been using it to mow her lawn 4 or 5 years. It has mowed several neighbors yards when their mowers have been on the fritz - mostly John Deere's. I have also mowed other neighbor yards using at least 4 other tractors - mostly John Deere's and they can't hold a candle to this mower. I didn't even know Scotts had a tractor mower until I saw this one. I was very skeptical about this one until I climbed on and got to use it and see its performance - I was sold very quickly!

We sometimes as Christians think we are the "best". That our denomination is really the one that "out performs" the other. We forget or do not recognize that we are all redeemed by God's Grace. We all started as new babe's in Christ and hopefully have grown in our walk as we have progressed on our spiritual journey. We need to be cautious as we judge others on the same walk - they are more similar than we think. The mower above? Yep, I am judging and being very opinionated. However, if you ever get to see a Scotts mower like the one above, look at the hood. Right under that Scotts emblem it states the following; " Manufactured by John Deere". It really is a John Deere - under the seat it states; "John Deere Model 1642 - use John Deere parts". Some of those Christians we are very opinionated about - guess what - they are redeemed by that same Savior!

Tuesday, 9 September 2008

""... Just Like Papa!"

This is papa's Irish Spring Body Wash it has an "8 hr scent system". It works great when taking a shower.

Recently Derek, Scott & Darla's young man that is now going into his teen years, took a shower at papa's house when visiting over Labor Day weekend. He used papa's Irish Spring. When he had finished he remarked; "Now I smell just like papa!" We all got a kick out of that - but then I began to think ---

If Derek took his notebook and followed papa all day - would papa be a good example of what a Christian should be? What would he write in his notebook?? Paul, in God's Word instructs us to be good examples so others would see Christ in us and that if they followed us we would lead them in the proper path. I wonder - am I a good example?

Lets see, I wonder what Derek would put in his notebook if had I stood there complaining to my neighbor about the worship service at church? Music was too loud, No Piano or Organ, way too contemporary for me sounded like "bar room" music. What if Derek heard me complain about the pastor? He just preaches too long - needs more depth in his sermons. Hummm, I wonder what Derek would put in his notebook if I had started my day in a hurry and didn't take time for at least a few minutes of personal devotion time with Jesus? What if Derek would hear me humming all those good ole Country & Western songs all day and not some of those Christian lyrics I hear on mama's radio? Oh yes, one more thing, my TV - what was that program I was watching???

At the end of the day was I pleased that Derek said: "I want to be just like papa!" ?

Sunday, 7 September 2008

Papa's Funeral Arrangements

Well the other day mama started my funeral arrangements. Please - do not send flowers yet! Donations would be fine, but no flowers at this time. Would any of you like to sing a song at papa's funeral? What would you sing?? We will put it in the program - maybe. I did tell mama I would like my casket to at least look like wood. The one mama picked out for papa costs about $1195 - not too bad.

What do you think? Are funeral pre-arrangements a good thing? I am thinking of having Ed and Sir Robert as pall bearers - but not sure where they would take me !! LOL !!

Friday, 5 September 2008

What would you do??

I would like you to meet Jake & Jess with two little ones. I presented this picture to my SS Class about 18 months ago. The question I presented to the class was: "If this couple walked into our church, as a new couple, with these two small children, what would you tell them was necessary to be a Christian?" Answers were varied, such as confess your sins, accept Christ, read your bible, pray, attend church. Mostly standard answers that I would give as well. Now let me tell the real story!

I went to Jake & Jess's wedding in July 2006. Mama and Papa will never forget THAT wedding! what a wedding - outside, they were barefooted, bride wore a wedding gown she got at a thrift store, came in on a motorcycle to the tune of Wild Thing!' She had a garage sale setup in the basement - all wedding gifts went into the garage sale immediately - they wanted cash. Why just cash?

In a few weeks they went overseas to various countries on the other side of the earth to help with aid victims, drug abuse victims and orphans. One incident has to do with the two children in the picture above.

One night a man found these two children next to their mother who was over dosed on drugs sitting on a street corner. The man remembered the shelter where Jake & Jess were at and put them on a bus and began a 2 hour ride with them to that shelter. Enroute the mother died on the bus. When arriving at the shelter Jake & Jess now had two young children and a dead body.
They immediately began trying to find family - no success.

This past Tuesday, Jess stopped by mama & papa's house. As we shared and wept, papa asked whatever happened to those two small children?? Long story short - they are in an orphanage and are waiting finalization of adoption here in the USA! They will have a home here next month if all continues as planned.

Friend, what would you do? You and I have the respondsibilty as Christians and human beings to be at service for Christ. Jake & Jess did not rescue everyone - but they did these two. Pray with papa today that we will be instruments that can be used by the Master.

Jake & Jess are today residing in the U.S. in a large city, serving in their community and both working with people. Jess will soon begin serving as a director for a refugee relief organization. Pray for this couple that the fire will continue to burn!

Wednesday, 3 September 2008

Marriage Tips plus Mama is cool!

Papa and mama are blessed! I have spent over 43 years married to mama - we are making our marriage work. A great marriage does not just happen - even among Christians. You have to nurture the relationship and cultivate it (keep the weeds out!). Papa is going to give you some suggested tips - take em or leave em!

1. Communicate - share your thoughts about each other to each other.
2. Always be kind - especially as you communicate.
3. Be each others best friend.
4. Take time for personal devotions and pray together as well.
5. Discuss major issues together - finances, family, your own concerns.
6. Take time to romance/date each other.
7. Be physical with each other !! Hug, hold hands, smile, look at each other do not shrink back when the other touches you. Mama and I love to hold hands in church, especially when standing, sitting, praying and singing. Hummmm, thats most of the time in church!
8. Never attack each other w/harsh words - you can never recapture spoken words!
9. Seek counsel quickly if your marriage is not going in the right direction.
10. Learn two new words you may have never used; "I'm Sorry!"

I love you mama!