Downloading The Days

As The World Turns
Days Of Our Lives
All My Children
Stories From The Grey Barn
Grey Barn Farm Journal
Julee's Journal
That's What I Thought.
Notes From The Porch.
Julee's Jambayla.

Where am I going with this?  I don't know.  I miss the kids.   I regret a few things, but am I brave enough to blog about them? No. It's a big 'ole house and I ramble around in it as my thoughts and dreams bounce from wall to floor and my questions echo in silence.  

The days go by. 

The good intentions sometimes sustain me, often not. I'm with Paul in Romans when he says, "For what I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate." 

The years go by.

I don't want to be debbie downer. I know, too late, right? And can you tell, I'm working on my year-end slide show?  I should be happier. This damn praire weather has me in a funk. Am I alone?

Sometimes I wonder if we've missed something.  What exactly does it mean when it says,

“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.

“Blessed are the gentle, for they shall inherit the earth.

“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.

“Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.

“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.

“Blessed are those who have been persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

  “Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me."

"Rejoice and be glad, for your reward in heaven is great; for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you".

Sermon on the blog.

It's '11, soon to be '12 no time for small talk today. I'll probably be back tomorrow, hopefully uploading.

It's a journey all right.

2 Peter 3:7-9 "But do not let this one fact escape your notice, beloved, that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years like one day. The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance."


Back To The Future?

Yesterday, they tore down the old May Ford Motor Sales building.

Now, I'm all for hope and change and progress.  But I cried as I passed the big bulldozer eating away at the  half moon shaped building while cubed block glass shattered at the impact.

There is a lot of talk these days about revitalizing downtown america.  I've even sat on an Indiana Main Street committee for almost 2 years, all the while driving back and forth to Michigan on the back roads and slowing to wonder about each and every boarded up downtown.

If I could have my way, yes we'd revitalize, rebuild, and restore our downtowns, but in the process we wouldn't tear down our memories and rip apart buildings that could have possibly been salvaged.

Now we have the post office, grocery, banks, parks, and a flower, bakery and antique shops, so I don't mean to sound ungrateful, but I don't just want new curbs, benches and tchotchke shops.  I want a bookstore, internet cafe, museum, art gallery, historical society, depot turned museum, the public school gymnasium, a town square, parallel parking, bowling alley, stage & screen theater, diner, and dance floor.  Oh, and also, a bike path along the railway and/or a crosswalk over highway 24. Is that too much to ask?

I guess so, welcome to town, Dollar General.


Dear Max & Lilly,

And so this is Christmas.

The time of year when the whole world gives pause and breathes in the rhythm and message of the Christ child. The baby born to die so that we might live.

People tend to wrap themselves in the traditions of finding the perfect gift or out-decorating the neighbors, but most lend an ear and bend a knee to their creator for, at the least, one solitary day out of the year.

I'm a crazy Christmas fanatic.  It isn't so much, my decorating flare, for my bows are plastic and my ornaments are homemade, but they are certainly hung by the chimney with care, before Thanksgiving.    

When your parents were small, I wasn't a Santa fan.   Grandpa Grover worked too hard in his 'browns' to let some fat guy in red take all the credit.  

We tried not to go overboard with gifts, but concentrated instead on being together, playing games, and for the longest time "going to grandma's".  

I will do my darndest to make Grandma's house part of your memories. 

I will keep snowsuits and boots by the back door.  I will suggest Grandpa make sleds for you out of cardboard boxes.  

We'll fire up the fireplace and VCR for "A Christmas Story" and "Polar Express".

One Christmas eve, before you get too old, I'll set up a lionel train 'neath the boughs, purely to see the look on your faces Christmas morning.

I will keep an almost unlimited stock of cookie dough, sprinkles, and colored frosting, ready at a whim,  to cut-out, bake, decorate and eat christmas cookies until we're sick.

Some evening, when the snow is falling fat and heavy, I will wake you shortly after bedtime and take you (dressed in your jammies, of course) on a neighborhood light tour. 

We'll head to the lovely historic Frauenthal to see the magic that is America's tallest singing Christmas tree. Don't tell anyone, but it's a time-honored tradition where the local, not so politically correct high school students sing the gospel message right out loud in the public square.

I have Luke 2 & "Twas The Night Before Christmas," memorized and if you want, I'll help you do the same. But maybe we'll start with this one ...

“What can I give him,

Poor as I am?

If I were a shepherd,

I would bring a lamb;

If I were a wise man,

I would do my part;

Yet what I can I give him—

I'll Give Him my heart.” 

As we sneak out to the porch to gather firewood, we'll stop and listen for church bells and soak in the silence of a pure Christmas morning, when the streets are empty and a heavenly air demands our attention. 
So this is your first Christmas and I simply can't wait to see the light in your eyes.


Status Update

Drive By Shooting 
I'm doing pretty good. 

Other than a couple rants about Country Music Awards shows, I consider myself a half-full person. Having said that, true country music ... the kind that pierces you in the depths of your soul ... needs an evangelist. Maybe it'll be The Band Perry - “We sort of feel like we are part of the country evangelism scene and we love to hear country songs on pop radio,” -  Kimberly Perry 

Yesterday was cold and blustery, but I woke in the night and threw up the sash to a beautiful golden moon, hanging low in the Western sky, who whispered,  

"Because of the LORD’s great love 
we are not consumed, 
for his compassions never fail. 
 They are new every morning; 
   great is your faithfulness."

This morning, all is calm, all is cold.

While in Florida, we went on a little Anna Maria Island mini-van cruise.  We ambled through a bayside trailer park, and if each and every retro-rounded-gaudy-hued mobile home didn't catch my eye, this secluded and serene spot did. I do believe the chartreuse chair spoke to me "Come away and rest awhile." Maybe it was the yellow one.

If this were available to me on a regular basis, I'd plunk down with a good book and choose a different chair for each day or chapter.

I'm meandering today.  I want to keep this here blog updated a bit more.  I want to be transparent and yet I border on passive aggressive.  Let's talk about that later.

I hate paragraphs that start with I.

How are you?  No, seriously, how ARE you? 

Funny story... Yesterday at church while speaking of how technology is a great tool to evangelize to the ends of the earth, the pastor said this while holding up his iPhone.  "I use my phone for everything ... this sermon is on here, I read books on here, I use it to text, search, and it's my map, I find places to eat, I take pictures and notes on it, I read the bible on here, I listen to music on my phone.  Ya know what I don't use a phone much for anymore?  To talk on.

So I leave you with this and my book list for the winter.

Redeeming Love ~ Francine Rivers
Living A Life Of Fire ~ Reinhard Bonnke
Steve Jobs ~ Walter Isaacson
The Supernatural Power of a Transformed Mind ~ Bill Johnson
The Help ~ Kathryn Stockett
Storm Warning ~ Billy Graham
Just As I Am ~ Billy Graham
Nearing Home ~ Billy Graham
The Acts of the Apostles ~ Saint Paul
Killing Lincoln ~ Bill O'Riley
Where The River Ends ~ Charles Martin
Lost December ~ Richard Paul Evans
Michael Vey the Prisoner of Cell 25 ~ Richard Paul Evans
Love Has A Face ~ Michele Perry
Against All Odds ~ Jim Stier

When Heaven Invades Earth ~ Bill Johnson
Out of a Far Country ~ Christopher Yuan
The Same Kind of Different As Me ~ Denver Moore, Ron Hall
Crazy Love ~ Francis Chan
Forgotton God ~ Francis Chan
Running Into Water ~ Angela Blycker

God bless you, and when He does, tell me about it.