Incoming!

IWAA7The college’s bell tower had not yet rung 6AM, and the sun was still coming up over the wheat that was drying out from the recent rains, which had at least brought in cooler weather.  So sipping hot tea on my patio while donning a sweatshirt in southern Missouri in mid-June was a real treat.  Birds singing, an occasional rooster (even though we live in town), and my big black dog was not panting yet.  Not bad at all for a summer Monday morning!

Until a bird decided to critique yesterday’s sermon notes: Continue reading “Incoming!”

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Hand me the wrench…no the other one.

garden lastMy brother and I were just reminiscing about coming home from school and seeing our grandfather in the heat of the day, stripped to the waist and sporting a bandana to catch the sweat dripping from his forehead, (and what was left of his grey hair), out mowing the lawn.  He and Grandma had been visiting our family, and he was not one to merely luxuriate when there was work to be done. 

And why not?  I mean, c’mon, he was only in his 70’s…

spidermanOwning property is a never-ending lifestyle, to be sure, and if you’re like Bob and I, whose only claim to fame is the ability to change a light bulb, then it becomes even more challenging.  I did try to hang wallpaper—once. (For the record, of the two of us, I tend to be the one who tries to “fix” something first, whereas my husband with all the letters behind his name doesn’t even bother….just call the plumber.)

The truth is, they—the carpenters, the plumbers, the electricians and the lot—they know that they’re doing.  I’ve seen them at work.  It’s really impressive, you know, where there was no wall, now there’s a wall, with windows and lights and paint.  Or maybe new carpet.  Or a vaulted ceiling.  And, once the tools are put away and the dust has cleared, if I do as I’m instructed to take care of it, it should all last a long time. 

Wow! 

Here the Hebrew nation is about the kick up some serious dust as they go into the Promised Land.  Moses is recapping their past few decades:

“But you have seen the LORD perform all these mighty deeds with your own eyes!  Therefore, be careful to obey every command I am giving you today, so you may have strength to go in and take over the land you are about to enter.”

I see an interesting sequence here. 

To begin with, this is addressed specifically to people who had first hand experience.  They had witnessed God’s provision and His “mighty deeds”.  With that knowledge came responsibility—

The responsibility, then, was obedience to the One who had allowed them to witness those miracles.  In other words, the experience of His presence was an act of grace that not everyone (up to that point in time) had been privy to.  And every act of grace carries with it the weight of personal responsibility.

Lastly, obedience to God, although a worthy end in itself, was also a means to an additional provision: strength.  Like taking care of my property, it takes a certain amount of vigor to maintain (dare I say “conquer”?) the challenges of home ownership; I can only imagine what it must have been like going into the Promised Land.  So I find that the people’s strength to conquer and maintain was uniquely tied to their obedience to God. 

Hmmmm….

Okay, time to do some never-ending work in the garden.  (At least I can to that much without having to call in a plumber.)

Deuteronomy 11:7,8  Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

If A, then B…or not.

wood 2Bob says my head is a scary place to visit.  Truth be told, he does occasionally admit that that’s one of the reasons he married me 35+ years ago.  To this day, he says that I’m “irregular”.  In the common sense, it’s both a blessing…and a curse.

I tried teaching myself logic from an authentically academic book.  Not the term “logic” that is generously used in everyday usage, although that idea harkens back to the true definition, I suppose.  One of the few things I got out of this autodidactic exercise, (besides that fact that I probably wasn’t going to learn this without a qualified teacher…), is that false premises lead to faulty conclusions.  In other words, Continue reading “If A, then B…or not.”

Grounded ’til graduation

IMG_20150103_172451138When I was a teenager, my mom used to tell me that I could use her as an excuse anytime I might find myself in a socially compromising situation.  The phrase was along the lines of,

“ARE YOU KIDDING ME? Do you know how many ways my mom will annihilate me if/when she finds out? Do you have any idea how many synonyms my dad knows for reprimand?  I suppose you WANT me to be grounded until graduation!!”

You get the idea.  And it was not an Continue reading “Grounded ’til graduation”

Doggy rehab

picmonkey dogThe first dogs we adopted for our young family were two “rescued” Pembroke corgis that our vet had received from someone else.  We brought home Peanut, and within a few days we also acquired her sister, Popcorn.  (Okay, so we didn’t name them.)

Peanut settled in quite well to family life; Popcorn was a different matter.  She made it quite clear, in her unique doggy way, that she was not pleased with humans, period.  Her defiant demeanor was manifested in several ways, not the least of which was a little brown pile on top of our bed (and that was a LONG way for a corgi to jump!)  She would slink away to hide by herself, and even seemed to adversely influence our otherwise congenial Peanut. 

She was angry, untrusting, and had clearly been hurt in the past.  Even though she was now in a loving home, she just could not conceive the Continue reading “Doggy rehab”