Veteran’s Day is approaching. It’s upon us on November 11th. Major salutes extend to the many veterans who contributed to the causes of our nation’s interests. We sure do need military personnel to aid in the advancement of our united matters. My uncle is a veteran as is my father. Love and honor flow for their service to our country. We who haven’t experienced armed forces actions can never fully understand the experiences and the camaraderie that soldiers hold dear. They invested blood, sweat and tears in the varied activities. Certainly, it isn’t an easy living being subjected to constant uncertainties, threats, and sacrifices. Also, military family members endure through the variables of their loved ones in the branches of service living. Of course, there are joys and triumphs included in the mixes. Lifelong friendships occur, celebrations happen, and great connections result. Also, the bonuses of being exposed to unfamiliar cultures and locales prove advantageous. Yes, it’s beneficial spiritually, socially and professionally to engage with various classes and culture. InContinue reading »

The Bible has not much good to say about human pride. Of course, not all forms of pride are bad. There’s nothing wrong with a painter taking ‘pride in his work,’ or a father who is proud of his son when the child accomplishes a difficult job. But the selfish kind of pride, the pride that wants to elevate itself above others and believes it is better than the person next door, is a formidable enemy we should not underestimate. It’s the disease that transformed the archangel into the devil, and it has caused many a good man to fall. And in truth, we all have a touch of the disease. Therefore, we would do well to be on guard. There is a funny story that illustrates the senselessness of pride. The story tells of two ducks and their dear friend the frog living in a delightful pond in the lush garden. However, the land was hit by a terrible drought, and soon the water in the pond dried up.Continue reading »

Thanksgiving Day is ahead Once again, we prepare to gather, to eat heartily to reminisce, to relax — Ah, joy is in the air The Lord delights in hearts of thanksgiving – Gratitude flows in abundance We have so much to be grateful for – daily We live, we breathe we work, we play – Truly, thanksgiving is in motion on the regular Prayers of gratefulness – Food spreads – full bellies, shared memories, status catch ups – Yes, joy is in the air Love manifests in amplified doses – Robust laughter rings out in households Warmth is spread in abundance – Kisses, hugs, and smiles make cherished appearances – Joy is indeed the air Precious moments are once again revealed on the celebrated day of Thanksgiving Above all – daily — to God be the glory.

The other day I read a touching anecdote which deserves to be shared. A father and his daughter were no longer on speaking terms. Things had happened and as a result, they both had locked away the love they had once felt for each other in the dungeons of their hearts. One day the daughter heard that the father was dying and she decided to at least see the old man one last time before he would pass on to the next world. When she sat at his bedside both of them were still. What could they say? At last, the dying man broke the silence and whispered, “My dear child, do you know that I have always loved you? I am so very sorry for the things I did wrong.” The daughter looked at him, and the bitterness welled up in her heart. “You said, you would always be there for me… But you weren’t. You hurt me that way.” The old man raised his bushy eyebrows. “How, child?Continue reading »

I saw her across the room I immediately began to pray God, please, let this be her I didn’t know her name Or if she had arrived with Someone else on her arm I only knew I needed to seize The moment before It passed by A long story short We wed several months later And she was the most Beautiful bride I’d seen Ever The envy of my friends The Queen of the Prom The joy of my life… All in one Perfect Until one day A terrible crash Lights of the ambulance Flashed Paralyzed from The waist down Scarred features On her face She barely spoke For a while As I wondered What to do No one envied me Or spoke of her beauty Some stopped visiting Or even bothering To call I could see it In her eyes The fear The sadness Her hope in us Was gone Dear Lord What am I supposed to do A fairy tale no more Some suggest I leave her ToContinue reading »

One of the most heartwarming accounts in the Bible is of the good Samaritan. Many other folks and I adore that story. It reveals that the man in need was rejected by a priest and a Levite, but helped by a good Samaritan. Luke 10:33-35 – KJV But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him, And went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him. And on the morrow when he departed, he took out two pence, and gave them to the host, and said unto him, Take care of him; and whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will repay thee. Beautiful feelings rise within when I recall the numerous occasions when good Samaritans have assisted in emergencies, and with different needs and desires. Reminders such as those bolsters hope in humanity.Continue reading »

International aid stretches to many regions. Billy Graham’s son, Franklin, has a ministry, “Samaritan’s Purse.” They give abundant outreach to provide for the needs of people in war-torn, economically deficient and weather damaged areas. Samaritan’s Purse provides evangelistic training, medical, education/literacy, construction and feeding programs. They also have a program called, “Operation Christmas Child.” Joyce Meyer World Missions has an international ministry outreach called, “Hand of Hope.” It provides free medical and dental care among other vital services. Haiti is once again in dire need of aid due to Hurricane Matthew. Disaster relief is in motion for that area and others affected by Matthew. Rebuilding is an enormous task. International help is essential to restore stability to the subject regions. It is deeply heartening to know that caring, skilled and qualified folks are willing to assist and follow through with performances that considerably impact in meaningful ways. Global helpers fill critical needs, and much gratitude flows for what they do to spread care through multiple actions on behalf of needyContinue reading »

I saw You Laying on the ground Covered in blood Flesh peeling back Unrecognizable Gruesome Broken Crying Tears flowing Why won’t You Get up? Why won’t You Fight back? Why don’t You Use the power You hold? Why Hold back? Over the years I’ve struggled To see the plan To make sense Of this Yes, before I was born I saw You Suffer and die For me But this moment Replays in my mind Get up, Jesus Defend yourself! Unleash the wrath You should have Towards those Who oppress You They are Yours They belong To You Don’t You remember Don’t You see The pain is too great The suffering too long Death too frightening As it is for me I ask once more Why are You doing this? Why are You taking Such punishment? In this very moment You look up at me To reply “So you don’t have to.”

I have always been a dog person. I grew up with dogs and even though later in life my wife and I were busy as traveling missionaries; we felt a dog would be a welcome addition to our household. So we got ourselves a nice brown puppy, and the fun began. Puppy training, walks in the morning, exploring the distant fields together at dusk, and loads of chewed up shoes, and a gentle friend for the children. Then my wife got him a collar. Not just any collar, but the best one she could find. A stainless steel collar, complete with a gold color name tag, and when we attached the accompanying red handkerchief to it, he almost seemed better dressed than any of us. “That was an expensive collar,” I questioned my wife. “Sure,” she answered a little sheepishly. “But, it will last us a lifetime, and… it looks so nice.” Money was tight, and I couldn’t see how we could afford such an extravagant collar. I would haveContinue reading »

My heart goes out to the folks involved in child custody issues. Comfort, though, is in the awareness that God is an ever-present help. Psalm 46:1 – KJV, “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” Yes, no matter what happens, God is love and what the Bible teaches about love and the Lord’s aid provides immense measures of relief. There are instances when, due to actions of vindictiveness, people are being deprived of access to their children. Of course, there are cases when such access is deemed safe and in the best interest of the subject children. We know, though, that there are situations when there are issues of spiteful deprivation. Particularly, disturbing are the times when youth are relocated to foreign countries, which makes custody matters even more challenging. Christians are some of those involved in heart-wrenching custody battles. It’s so draining for parents to be engaged in those sharp disagreements. Of course, children suffer considerably through the ordeals. Thanks be unto God thatContinue reading »

Learning, learning, learning It continues Forever ongoing – Elementary, Middle, High We’re taught Sunday school Bible study Sermons, Lessons, tests – Learning, learning, and learning some more We gain, we develop and progress – Brain and heart challenges Come in plentiful supply – Our achievements Build and cheer us – Learning, learning and learning some more We grasp, we forget We recall and review – Notes, bookmarks, and graphics galore Learning, learning and learning some more Knowledge of God transcends all other topics of learning – Love lessons, Jesus lessons, Wisdom lessons, gospel lessons – Learning, learning and learning some more Nothing adds up better Than learning of the Most High – Learning, learning and learning some more.