Posts filed under ‘Western Oklahoma’
Not sure how I could have forgotten to include this item in my post yesterday. The calf activity distracted me from finishing up our weekly activities.
Friday we were treated to a day in the city, Oklahoma City that is, by our friends Buddy and Lynnie Suthers. Buddy and Lynnie both work at Trinity after long careers in the family race horse business. At one time the Merrick Ranch was one of the largest quarter horse operations any where. While they are not nearly as big as they used to be they still love it and are keeping their hand in it.
So we went to the city for a big yearling sale at a very upscale, at least to me, sale barn. You can read more about it HERE. It is a very nice place and during the 3 day sale nearly 1000 horses were sold by auction. While we were there one sold for $185,000.00 based, I understand on it’s breeding and potential. It was quite a place and very interesting.
I had told our children and grandchildren that we were going to a horse sale and I was going to bid on some horses as an investment. I was not serious and even thought the way I wrote it they would know it was a jokebut apparently they didn’t and thought Poppa had bought them a horse. There were a few that sold for 2500-3K but that too is a little rich for me, since there is little room in our trailer for a horse. It was a lot of fun.
From there we went to Remington Park,the OKC horse racing facility where Lynnie’s brother Joe Merrick had a couple fo horses running. It is a beautiful race track with indoor viewing from a beautiful restaurant and the Suther’s treated us to a great dinner and an insiders view to horse racing. Linda did the wagering and hit it big when one of Joe’s horses won! We even were invited to the winners circle with the owner and his family for the “win” picture. That picture is posted on my facebook page if you are interested. HERE
It was one of those days where everything we did was new and exciting and being with Buddy and Lynnie is always special because they are such real and regular people who have been has high up as you can go in the horse business and seen their lives radically changed to be Kingdom people who are also in the horse business. Their family story is pretty cool to hear.
The last item has to be “my” Washington Huskies win over the mighty USC Trojans on Saturday. It was on TV here so I was able to watch it all. That sure was fun. Whatever happens from here at least we know what it can be.
I enjoy writing the meanderings each week because I get to see, right in front of me, what we have been up to. It has also been a good way to fill our family and friends in on what we have been doing too. So here is the 84th installment.
Item one. It was a great first week back in Western Oklahoma and full of things one could only do here. Got to go armadillo hunting for the first time (probably only time) which was an adventure. These little creatures are not good for flower beds, nice grass or any other plant you like to look at. They just rip it all up to get at the roots. So they have to be removed and since I was right here on the “ranch” and I had a shotgun, I got the call. One more task to add to my growing resume.
Item two. Went with friend Yandy Yarbrough to put up a deer feeder which I wrote about already on the Juniper Tree. Yandy works a regular job, is a life time cowboy, both working and rodeo, but what he really loves is hunting. Riding with him in his truck is adventure because he never misses any animal that might be out there, no matter how much light there is. One of the blessings of our life is the young families we get to enjoy relationship with here in Oklahoma. It is so fun to be part of their lives and have a part in encouraging their relationship with the Father.
Item three. We are beginning to settle in here, even though our regular spot is under construction. We are having a cement pad poured to provide stability and a mud free place to park. So we are parked nearby but without all our hookups. It is just fine but we are looking forward to our “new” place. Having these beautiful 100 acres as our Oklahoma home is really a blessing.
Item four. Plans for Summit2 are well underway. November 12-22 are the dates if you want in. email me if you want information. We are responsible for most of the administrative details of this conference and I do some teaching as well. Here are a few summations of summit1 speakers, I wrote after lasts years event: HERE and HERE.
Item five. Jake the dog just barked me up to see a calf hanging out in front of the trailer. Apparently an escapee from one of the pens here on the “ranch”. We went out to try and herd him into one of the stalls in the barn but were unsuccessful. Just another experience I rarely had in my past life.
I leave you with these words from my good friend Steve Grace: I would rather be a poor man serving Jesus than a rich man serving my own means. I would rather be weary fighting the good fight than well rested in my own irrelevant accomplishments. I would rather die for the cause of Christ than live for myself. (Steve Grace)
A young friend on Facebook, in a status update, made this comment: “I hate all blogs, all of them.” So, if you don’t hate blogs continue reading the first meanderings in several weeks.
A lot has happened and nothing has happened. After an eventful trip from Western Oklahoma to the Pacific Northwest we hung out with your adult children and our grandchildren. Went to the beach, the zoo, Northwest Trek, Seattle, camped with everyone for a week, visited a few friends, preached a couple of times, went to church with Brad and Summer and the time went by. All the grandkids are growing and changing and doing well. Summer is growing and changing with granddaughter #2 and grandkid #6 and she is doing well too. While there are challenges in each of their lives they seem to be handling them well and living life with hope and confidence. I am very proud of our children and theirs. Most of our time was spent enjoying and caring for our family.
Item one. The trip back to Oklahoma took us through Washington, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas and back into Oklahoma. We made stops outside Missoula, Montana at a favorite stopping spot for a couple of days. We drove through the northwest gate into Yellowstone Park (up on of the steepest, windiest and narrowest roads we have travelled) and into Cody, Wyoming where we stayed on the grounds of the Cody Night Rodeo with our friend Dan. Dan is from Sayre but was spending the summer announcing the rodeo in Cody. He was our tour guide to the Buffalo Bill Cody Museum, one of the great museums in the west, in my opinion and around the beautiful Cody area. He has become a Cody expert and it was fun to spend some time with him.
After Cody we drove up the Shell Canyon route to the top of the Big Horn mountains where we met my brother Mike and sister in law Vicky, for 5 days of camping and fishing in the most beautiful country anywhere. We lived on the west side of the Big Horns when Mike and I were very young and then Linda and I and our family lived on the east side 20 years ago. The Big Horns and the North Fork of the Tongue River are very special to all of us. It was such a wonderful time and we really didn’t want to leave. I would love to move back there again some day. Just need a job!
The fishing was outstanding. The North Fork is a meandering stream, through tall willows and so every corner is a new adventure. 20 years ago part of it was designated catch and release, barbless flies and lures only and it has turned that little stream into a monster cutthroat fishery. We caught so many fish over 18 inches that the little ones (under 16 inches) were almost boring. I caught 3-4 that were in the 22+ inch category, which in that river is a huge fish. Probably weighed 3-4 pounds. And, yes I did get a license!
There are moose every where up there as well and the four of us went “moose hunting” each evening. Linda has some great pictures she will post somewhere I imagine.
It was a very peaceful and soul renewing time for all of us. I remembered again why fly-fishing has been so important to my mental and soul health, over the years. Life has been quite uncertain, in a lot of ways, the last 4 years but one constant in our lives has been the opportunity to travel and see places that have real meaning in our history and refresh our lives.
Item two. What the future looks like here in Sayre begins to play out this morning. Linda will go to work on some administrative details that have piled up related to the ministries we serve. I will get some things rolling for Convergence and Summit2 and we will both begin getting back into the relationships that mean so much to us. Things have changed here in many ways since we have been gone. I am not sure what it all means or how it all works out but we have a Father who does and loves to see us happy and fulfilled so we will enjoy that blessing.
Seasons change and so do we. That is the Father’s intention. He loves to love us and He loves to have us dependent on Him and Him alone. That is the hard one for most of us. We have our agenda’s and our need to be in control but life works best when we are desperate for Him to lead us through each day. That is where I am this morning.
Blessings on all of you who read this. You can follow us on facebook (www.facebook.com/gregory.scandrett) and there will be some regular additions to the juniper tree as we move along.
Here is the weekly update of our life on the road between “homes”.
Item one. Travelling between Western Washington, Western Oklahoma and Arizona is becoming pretty “normal”. We have logged nearly 50K miles over the last 3 years but some of those miles are just the here and there of “living” somewhere for a couple of months at a time. This is at least our 8th trip back to Washington since we sold the house and started living on the road. It is good to be back in Washington but it never quite feels “right”.
Item two. Part of this nomadic life means you really don’t completely “fit” anywhere. There are no roots and no real permanence. That is the trade off. If you live in a house and work in a community you collect stuff and take care of stuff and turn in a circle of relationships at work and whatever else you do to connect with people. When you “live” in a variety of locations you don’t sink down in, because you know you are moving on and so every stop is temporary.
The relationships we have are as good as any we have ever had but they are such that you never quite “fit” because life is so different for us. We don’t have regular jobs and we don’t have lawns to mow, houses to take care of or regular meetings or gatherings to attend especially when we are not in Sayre. Sometimes I really want that “normal” again but that isn’t possible here in Mason County and if we settle into that normal in Western Oklahoma we miss out on life with our family here in Washington. It is always a dilemma without a good solution, so we keep on doing what we do.
Item three. Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Colorado, Wyoming, Montana, Idaho, Washington. The most direct route to Washington from Oklahoma passes through all of those states and covers a little more than 2000 miles. We stopped in Colorado Springs overnight to have dinner with my dad and see his new apartment. He has a $3000.00 view for $300.00 in a senior housing place. Really great.
I parked the trailer at my brothers business and it was the biggest trailer mess ever, by far. I got into one of those jams people who pull trailers avoid at all costs but because of the “perfect storm” of situations I got to the place where I could not back up or pull forward without damaging the trailer, the pickup or both. It was a lose/lose situation. Wish I had pictures so you could see what I stepped in. It was totally bad judgement on my part but there were so many factors going on it was easy to make a bad decision. After much effort in a rain storm, angels lifted the trailer a couple of inches and we made it out with some small scrapes. I still have nightmares about it.
We went from The Springs to Charlie and Lorissa Kingsbury’s family ranch outside Greeley, Colorado where we spent the fourthof July weekend with Charlies family. We were treated like family (which we are) and had such a great time. Wonderful meals, the Greeley Stampede (87th annual), fireworks at the country club (never been to one of those) prayer with Charlies car dealership partners over their businesses, church (the most patriotic Sunday ever!) and many more fun activities that left us gasping for breath. Great fun with great people.
We left Greeley about noon and drove into Wyoming and on to a rest area 60 miles east of Bozeman, Montana where we spent a short night and then on the next morning to Missoula where we loaded up on groceries and headed to our destination along Lolo Pass and the Lochsa River. We have stayed in this National Forest Campground many times over the years and always enjoy it there. I caught a lot of fish including 10-12 of the biggest cutthroat trout ever on that river (16-20 inches) Great fun.
Did something dumb there too. Because the nearest place to buy a fishing licence is about 50 miles one way, down the winding highway, I decided for the first time ever in my life, and I fish a lot in a lot of different states, to see how the fishing was before I made the trip to get the license (there was road construction too). I have fished dozens of different rivers in at least 5 states over the years, always bought a license and never, ever been checked, ever! You guessed it. 10 minutes into my decision to check the fishing before buying the license, along comes the LAW and checks me for a license! I felt so stupid and there is nothing you can say, no explanation wanted and none he hasn’t heard before. The saga is still not concluded because it looks like I will have to drive back over there to appear in court. I am trying to work something out but they are pretty tough on poachers! “You just have to believe me, Sir, I have never done this before, honest, really, I never have…” Sure.
We left Wilderness Gateway Friday morning and drove the 500 plus miles to Shelton arriving in time for #1 grandson Sloan’s 5th birthday. We drove to Gig Harbor to pick up Brad’s two children, Canyon Paul and Sage and brought them to Shelton for Sloan’s party as dad was doing a wedding and mom wanted to go along without two small children. It was a long day but a log of fun.
Well, that gets us to today and the start of 7 weeks or so in Washington before we head out on another adventure in living “nowhere”.
Not sure what we will do with all of this time here but will let you know.
We have the trailer parked in a new section of the Lake Thunderbird Lake State Park just south and a little east of Norman Oklahoma. Norman, of course is the home of the University of Oklahoma, or OU for short, the school I pull for out here in Big 12 country. If it is OU why is it not called Oklahoma University? We have some more work on the truck tomorrow in OK City so this was a good place to come from Duncan.
Item one. We left Sayre Friday and headed south to Duncan, Oklahoma for the Oklahoma state high school finals (rodeo). This event is the culmination of a year long effort to be a state champion in one of many events in high school girls and boys rodeo. We had a great time going to the final two performances of a week long event, hanging with Charlie and Lorissa and the kids and with Jason and June and their family. Their son Lane finished up his year as state champ in the bull riding event. He will ride in the National Finals rodeo in Farmington, NM later in the month.
It is amazing to me that at these high school/junior high rodeos they begin the event with prayer. True for all rodeo events as far as I can tell. But not only do they have prayer to start off they almost all have a church service if the event goes over a Sunday, as most of them do. Can you imagine starting basketball games in Washington with prayer and weekend tournaments hosting a church service?
Jason and June were responsible for the church service and invited Charlie and another friend, world champion bull rider, Matt Austin to be the speakers. Jason was leading worship and invited me to play with the band (they were short handed). It was a lot of fun and the guys did a great job of speaking Kingdom into these young people and their families. Matt and Charlie are both Convergence students and great friends.
Item two. We have been busy lately with a number of interesting opportunities. We hosted a group from Fellowship of Christian Cowboys at Trinity a couple of weeks ago and have also been spending some time helping them with some administrative duties. They are one of the many national Christian organizations that are in transition and so we are helping them to refocus and to think more long term. Lots of organizations tend to have some real growth and influence but after a few years discover they are not longer making much of an impact doing things the way they used to do them. It has been a challenge to find the right hooks back into viability but it is coming.
Item three. We started teaching a new Convergence class this past week called “Pursuing a Kingdom marriage and family”. We had the biggest group we have ever had for a Wednesday evening class. My thesis is that like so many other things that are called Christian, marriage has taken on more of a cultural influence than it has a Kingdom one. The high point in a Christian marriage is usually the wedding and from then on “Christian” marriage looks about like any other marriage. Divorce rates seem to bear this thesis out. We need to help our young people see what marriage was intended to be prior to marriage and to guide those already married away from the cultural way of doing the marriage relationship and into a Kingdom one.
For the first session I worked hard to raise our awareness of the high value of marriage as a picture of how much our Father loves us and desires intimacy with us. Marriage and the sexual union in marriage is designed by the Father to be a picture of His love for us and the potential of intimacy with Him. The highlight of the class had to be a discussion of how sexual intimacy in marriage is a graphic illustration of how the Bride is to come into an intimate relationship with the Bridegroom, through worship. If you want to listen to the audio of the teaching you can find it HERE.
Hope to get the next post on 24 up this week. We are ready to focus our attention on the second of 3 questions the disciples asked Jesus in Matthew 24.
Have a great week.
Our time in Arizona is coming to an end. We leave early tomorrow morning for the 2 hour drive to the Phoenix airport and a flight to Seattle, where we will spend a short week with our children and grandchildren. Next Tuesday we will return to Payson, pick up our trailer and begin the trip back to Western Oklahoma, arriving just in time for tornado season! Don’t want to miss that!
Item one. When we left Sayre a couple of months ago I believed I had heard God about what we were supposed to do with our time. It was not a wishful thinking plan but one we felt was simply going the next step with some individuals and groups we had been sowing into for some time. The first month went according to plan and in fact, things happened that we didn’t expect, and were a real blessing to us.
This last month has gone a completely other direction from what we thought would happen. It is easy for me to question if I heard God right when things don’t work out the way I planned and it is hard for me to just go with what is, rather than being disappointed with what isn’t. Any one relate? But I have learned a lot about staying in step with the Spirit, doing what is right in front of me, as my friend Doug encourages me to do, and being ok with not accomplishing the plan. Never easy for me but I am learning. Here are a few things God did while we have been in Payson, that I didn’t plan on or expect.
- We have spent a lot of time with Chuck and Nancy, more than I imagined and that has been good. We have poured into them, been poured into by them and had some really fun relaxing times which I think they needed maybe more than we did. I have been able to work several days helping Chuck with their business which has been fun and I helpful, I think. We have shared a lot together, hearing the Spirit about their future and ours. While I knew we would spend time together it has been encouraging to do more than expected with them.
- I love to worship and I love to participate in leading worship. I have played very average guitar for years and have had a desire to do more worship leading but there are always people more gifted than I am around to lead. Chuck is a guitar player and a worship leader and leads regularly at two meetings each week and he invited me to join him. So I have been practicing a few times a week and participating in leading worship a couple of times every week and it has been a lot of fun. My fingers are toughened up, I have increased my skill a little, had a lot of fun and helped some folks enter in to worship.
- When we arrived in Payson our hosts were in the process of training and certification to open a Healing Room here in this part of Arizona. I was familiar with Healing Rooms (find out about my experience HERE) and wanted to know more. Each week we participated in a small group training time with the people who will lead and staff this new ministry in Payson. Then this past weekend we went to a large group training in Phoenix where we were led by the Southwest Directors for Healing Rooms. It was a really good learning experience and a good time of ministry in the Spirit. We now have some experience and training we can use in ministry wherever we are and the potential of starting or being part of a Healing Room ministry in Oklahoma.
- Payson is a beautiful place. As nice as any where we have been. The weather is nearly perfect and the sky a beautiful blue almost all the time, with very little wind. We are parked in Chuck and Nancy’s side yard on a hill, overlooking the city. Our view is really nice. It is easy to take these kinds of gifts for granted as we are privileged to be in a lot of really nice places. I have been trying to not take it lightly, but to bless the Father several times each day for this gift. The view repeatedly puts me in a place of prayer for this city and for the ministries that go on here, day after day. It is really an honor to pray for a city and to believe God for breakthrough in the hearts of people you don’t know and will probably never meet. That has been good for me.
We have now been on this journey for nearly two years. We really had no idea where it would take us and what we would do. Our Family at Trinity in Sayre has not only embraced us and given us a place to belong and serve, they have also freed us to travel from place to place sharing what we have been given with others. They not only took us in when we felt like outcasts and foreigners in our own home, they have launched us into a unigue ministry that is always interesting. It will be good to return to Sayre and the Family there, and to see what the Father has for us to do next. I have some plans but remaining open to the Spirit’s direction!
But for now it is Canyon Paul, Sage O, Eyob, Sean and Sloan time!!!! (will spend some time with their parents too!)