I remember the last yard sale we had. Afterward, Ellen made the statement, “This is the last yard sale I’m ever having.” Famous last words. At the moment of the typing of this blog, my wonderful wife is in the storage building in the back yard pricing things for….you guessed it, another yard sale.
I really commend her for her tenacity. She does so much for us. She cleans houses to help make our financial ends meet. She is a great cook as you can tell by the way I am “growing.” She keeps one of the cleanest houses I’ve ever been in (now with the help of our four teens and me). Most importantly, she is a great mom to our children and I couldn’t ask for a better wife.
Yes, having a yard sale is a great deal of trouble for her, but it’s just one more way she serves her family. So, here’s to you Ellen a blog dedication!!
I awoke this morning on this Memorial Day thinking about all of of the men and women who have died for causes for which the the United States has stood. War after war has been fought in the name of democracy and freedom for the entire world.
Opening the local news paper site led me to an article about the veterans of the “Greatest Generation.” It was an article talking about how we are losing 1000 to 16oo World War II veterans each day to death. It pointed out that there are many stories which will never be told due to losing these great people.
My favorite character in the Star Wars movies, Yoda once said, “War does not make one great.” That maybe true, but sacrifice does. Giving your life for people you don’t even know in order for them to continue in freedom is an incredible sacrifice. Jesus said, “The greatest love a person can show is to die for his friends.”(John 15:13 NCV)
I know you have people in your family that you remember on days like today. Here are two in mine. The first picture is Ellen’s grandfather, William “Bill” Hammond. The second is my grandfather, Alvin Kilpatrick. They both were US Army veterans who fought in WWII.
Both of these men were part of that greatest generation. They lived and died in a time when your word was your honor, your country was worth dying for, and God was still one in whom our government still honored. There are many more in my family who have fought for this country as well. Let us never forget these who have paid the price in time away from their families and many with their lives for the freedom of people in this great country.
Today marks the last day of exams for my kids and the beginning of a busy summer.
The last drumline practice was yesterday, but only until July 5. Brandon and Danielle are involved in that. Britney is in the color guard for the band and will begin summer practice at some point. Brandon made the B-team basketball team. YEAH! He started practice that day and will have summer workouts all summer long with a camp in the middle of June. He is also playing American Legion baseball and starts practice for that today. Tabitha is working and dating our “boy-friend-in-law” Gary. She is either at work or hanging out with him. I just don’t understand what he’s got that could possibly take her heart away from her daddy. Oh, well, I guess it had to happen at some point. Pray for mom and dad on that one.
Along with church trips and activities, it is setting up to be a busy time for us. Ahh, life with four teenagers in the house.
It’s a great day! Yes, we got the microphones. They are better than I thought, and we got a wonderful price on them. Yes, the season finale of 24 is tonight and I’m looking forward to that! Yes, my son is trying out for the High School B-team in Basketball and hopefully will make it.
All of those are good reasons that this is a great day, but the greatest reason it’s been a great day is the time I got to spend with the love of my life and my best friend, Ellen. We rode to Nashville together to pick up the microphones and just made a day of it. We talked, shopped, and ate together without much of a schedule and no one to interrupt. It was one of the best times we’ve spent together. I told her on the way home that it was a day I will never forget. I thank God everyday for giving her to me. Without her, I don’t know where I would have gone in my life. What a day!!!!!
Ellen and I will be travelling to Nashville tomorrow to pick up something that we’ve been hoping for for some time now. We are going to get some wireless microphones for our praise team. I know it seems like a small thing, but we have dealt with wires all along the front of our auditorium for a long time. It’s messy, but more than that it’s somewhat of a fall hazard.
We had been looking for some time, but due to lack of funds we couldn’t. After saving the money over time, we managed enough to get some mics, but not the quality for the money we could spend. In the meanwhile, I called and asked a friend if they had a connection. To make a long story short, she told me that her group had a set of mics for sale. They just upgraded their system. We will be able to purchase enough mics, though used, for our praise team that are much better quality for much less than the cost for new ones.
Some say, “What luck!” We are saying, “Praise God!!”
Do you think God cares about such small things? I do. I believe that God is interested in our lives here. After all, He calls us His children. We are consumed with our children, no matter how small the matter. I like to think that our heavenly Father cares too.
How many times have you uttered these words, “I’ll never do that again” only to find yourself, “doing that again?” We call that around here “eatin’ crow.” Most of the time it doesn’t taste very good. Someone said, “make your words sweet, for one day you may have to eat them.”
Today was that day for me. I decided to do something about which I had used the “never again” phrase, and it turned out to be a more pleasant experience this time around. I went to the local “preachers’ luncheon.”
After the last time, for reasons I won’t go into here, I said that I would never go back. But I received an “olive branch” from a local friend who simply sent me an email with a one sentence invitation to come. It felt good to get that personal email. Oh sure, I’d received the standard mail out each month, but no genuine invite on a personal basis. I really appreciated that genuine invite.
The meeting was pleasent. We had a good lunch. I sat with some guys I haven’t had lunch with in quite a while. I really enjoyed the time.
Why is it that we do that? We say in the heat of a moment that we will “never, never.” There may be an occasion or two where that is appropriate, but many times we cut God’s ability off to work in our life when we say,”never.” Maybe He wanted me to go back to help someone, or to receive help that I might have needed. Learning this teaches me to be careful how I pronounce what I will or will not do in the future.
James tells us to us to say, “If the Lord wills….” That leaves me wide open to do His bidding and not mine–even when I want to do something else. Maybe I’m growing up a bit. Almost 43, it’s about time!
I’m beginning a new class at Creekside in a couple of weeks for our Sunday morning adults class. It’s going to be an “open forum” type class where we study some of the topics under discussion in the church. The class will turn in questions to be discussed and each week we will undertake to talk about one or two of them.
These kinds of classes are not something that we’ve had at Creekside since I’ve been here, which is about 5 years. We are just not a church that deals with the “issues” very much. My hope is that the class will be one that will center on love and understanding for where we all are in our particular journeys. Love is a must in a class setting like this.
One of the things I shared with the class Sunday is that I think we are ready for something like this. We have a loving spirit and many have open minds to listening to the scriptures and learning together and from each other. We have a church family that understands that we are not all in the same place doctrinally, spiritually, and in the realm of maturity. We also have a strong leadership of men who are not afraid of tough questions and not afraid of admitting that they don’t have all the answers. Imagine that–shepherds who don’t claimperfection!!
I guess I’m asking for your prayers in this endeavor. I pray that God will bless us so that we may come away from this with more opportunity to open our minds to great things that God has in store for our family.
Just to let you know, the first question turned in was, “How do we decide which parts of the New Testament are cultural? (like head-covering, women speaking in worship, and great one another with a holy kiss) After the question was asked, the person asking it said, “I don’t mean to dwell on the issues of this particular question, but the question itself.” How do we decide? I think it’s a great question with which to start.
Maybe some of you scholars can help me with this. I’ll take any comments or resources. it’s OK to email me privately about it too.