Archive for August, 2008

Monday morning meanderings. Vol.55

Grapeview, WA

The sun has made a typical NW disappearance and we are entering a cloudy rainy period.  Bummer.  Still nice enough, so won’t complain too much.

Item one.  Sage Olivia Scandrett, her parents and big brother are doing well.  We will spend a little time with all of them tomorrow.  Thanks to all who have written, called and texted your congrats.  We are so blessed.  I can’t figure out why the pictures I posted the other day don’t enlarge properly.  I will post some others later in the week and see if I can get it right.

Item two.  This is the week for visits.  Linda’s parents are coming, maybe her sister and my dad arrives on Thursday.  Not sure what we will do while they are here but I am sure it will involve grand children.

Item three.  Traci’s friend, and ours, Jenn Heckert is finally returning to the US from Kazakhstan on Wednesday.  She has been there for months working through the major complications of adopting a child.  But she and their new daughter, Alea are ticketed out on Wednesday.  Warren, the new dad and her two brothers are anxiously awaiting her arrival.  Keep praying.  Here is a link to her blog. I think it might require a password, but here it is anyway.

Item four. Did you watch the Prez forum from Saddleback Church?  I watched parts of it and some of the commentary afterwards.  Didn’t really change my mind about anything and didn’t make me want to vote for either of them any more than I did before.  Many of their comments were what I would have expected.  Nice to hear a strong pro-life stand from McCain and I thought Obama’s comment to the same “when does conception begin” question was rather flip-“…answering that question with specificity is above my pay grade,”.  McCain’s statement about the “bully pulpit” the presidency is said to be, left me cold.  Part of our problem in relating to the world is that kind of attitude.  Bullying never worked well but sure doesn’t work now, at all.  We don’t need more of the same but can we afford Obama? More here

Item five. I found this quote from D.A. Carson’s comments on 1Corinthians 3:13. It is a powerful summation of much of what I have been trying to say for months on The View. I hope you will take the time to read it, especially if you are in leadership in some kind of Christian fellowship or ministry.

“Each one’s work will become manifest, for the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed by fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done.”  1Corinthians 3:13

This ought to be extremely sobering to all who are engaged in vocational ministry. It is possible to “build the church” with such shoddy materials that at the last day you have nothing to show for your labor. People may come, feel “helped,” join in corporate worship, serve on committees, teach Sunday school classes, bring their friends, enjoy “fellowship,” raise funds, participate in counseling sessions and self-help groups, but still not really know the Lord. If the church is being built with large portions of charm, personality, easy oratory, positive thinking, managerial skills, powerful and emotional experiences, and people smarts, but without the repeated, passionate, Spirit-anointed proclamation of “Jesus Christ and him crucified,” we may be winning more adherents than converts. …the fundamental nonnegotiable, that without which the church is no longer the church, is the gospel, God’s “folly,” Jesus Christ and him crucified. (The Cross and Christian Ministry)

I hope to write more on this subject another time, but found it so thought provoking for all of us as we begin another week, I wanted to share it.

Thanks for reading.

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August 18, 2008 at 10:05 pm 2 comments

Sage Olivia Scandrett

Sage Olivia Scandrett was born about 7:30 Friday morning, August 15th.  She weighed a diminutive 5lbs 12oz and is 17 inches long and in my opinion very beautiful and charming.  While the boy grand babies outnumber Sage Olivia 4-1, I am certain she will hold her own.  Summer, her mother is doing great and Brad her proud daddy is too.

Here are a couple of pics.  More are sure to follow. 

August 17, 2008 at 9:32 am 8 comments

Monday morning meanderings. Vol.54

Grapeview, Washington

Monday morning and nothing much “exciting” to meander through.  Trucking school is over, the new baby is not here yet and there isn’t a whole lot else new in the picture.  So maybe I will pick on politics or religion or both.

Item one.  Is it too late for a do-over in the political primaries that gave us the Obama/McCain choice?  I suppose it is.  Don’t care for either and I really don’t like the premise that says, “vote for the person who will appoint “conservative” judges.  Some say there is a real choice in this election but the choice to me seems to be between Tweedledee and Tweedledum. Barna says “evangelicals” are choosing Obama by a large margin and that is certainly a change.  The race issue, though seldom mentioned is an issue that is real and it is really sad that it is.  Neither of these guys can do much about energy problemsand the resultant economic stuff that falls out of the high cost of energy.  We are so blase in this country about energy that we are happy if the cost of fuel drops a quarter, even though it is up 2 dollars since this time last year.  The almost total lack of anything constructive coming from either side of the political spectrum towards solving the major problems we face as a nation and world would be humorous if it wasn’t so scarey.  Having Nancy Pelosi and Obama running the country doesn’t sound like fun but frankly McCain and Mitt Romney is not a great alternative.  If I had to vote today, I’m not sure I would.  Here are a three different viewpoints that are interesting, sort of.  Here and here and here.  Who are you choosing?

Item two.  Here are a few blogs I read with some interesting posts: Eugene Cho posts an interesting article from CNN with this title “Why many Americans prefer their Sunday’s segregated.”  You can find Eugene’s blog hereThis one here from the Imonk has a pretty good bite.  The title? “The suburban Jesus hates me”.  And this one here from one of my favorite blogs, Stuff Christians like, on a Christian Tattoo contest.  This one from the NY Times is good but few are bothering to listen.  This from a young man who grieves authentically.  Find it here.  And my friend Sumi blogs with such sensitivity on the same subject, here.  And this one on how men feel about getting old, or is it older?  Here.

Item three.  Well, here it is Tuesday and I am just getting back to the meanderings.  Obviously, it wasn’t too pressing.  I have gotten pretty lazy with this blog lately and I know for those of you who sit by your computers waiting for these posts to come through, this has caused you some serious withdrawal issues.  Sure.  We went to see Brad, Summer and Canyon Paulfor the afternoon and evening and that was good fun.  CP is a lot of fun as he is very verbal and full of life.  Summer is really ready to have the new baby and not moving too fast or doing too much.  I think it could be anytime.

Good friend Tyler and wife Christine just had their first, yesterday and what a baby he is.  Joshua weighed in at 10 lbs 6 oz!  That is a big baby.  Congrats to them and to Grandma Barb!

My Dad is coming for a visit, next week and that will be fun.  It has been a long time since he came to see us and he will enjoy seeing the four boys and maybe the new one will show while he is here.  I think Linda’s parents are coming for a day soon too.

Our friends Rand and Kaylee are moving with their boys from Phoenix, AZ to Phoenixville, PA.  Rand will be part of the leadership of a church there.  What a big move for them.  They have so faithfully waited for their Father to open just the right door for them and this is it!  Read Kaylee’s blog here.

Item four.  There is a disease in the full time RV world called “hitch itch”.  It comes when you have been one place for a while and want to move along.  We are starting to get it, not so much because this isn’t a great place and we are really enjoying the kids and Bill and Leslee but when you live in an RV moving along is what you do and besides it is time to get back to the other home in Oklahoma.  Really miss Andy, Julie, Daryle, Carrie, Buddy, Lennie, Debby, Cody, Stacey (and all the kids), Charlie, Lorrisa (all their kids too), Eric, Jenny and the girls, Jack, Sharisa, Harley and the list goes on.  What friends they all are to us.  Don’t really miss Oklahoma, though it is steadily growing on me, but there are no greater (some equally great out here) people than Okies!

That’s enough.  There will be more posts this week, for sure, well maybe…

August 12, 2008 at 11:29 pm 1 comment

Friday Funny. Medical dictionary.

Grapeview, WA

What follows is a medical dictionary that was supposedly written by blondes.  Since I found it on the desk of one of my truck driving instructors I have decided to say it was written by truck drivers, who may or may not be blond.  So here it is A Medical Dictionary as written by truck drivers:

  • Artery…..The study of painting
  • Bacteria…..Back door of cafeteria
  • Barium…..What doctors do when their patients die.
  • Bowel…..A letter like A, E, I, O, U
  • Cesarean Section….A neighborhood in Rome.
  • Cat Scan…..Searching for a kitty.
  • Cauterize…..Made eye contact with her.
  • Colic…..A sheep dog.
  • Coma…..A punctuation mark.
  • D&C…..Where Washington is.
  • Dilate…..To live long.
  • Enema…..Not a friend.
  • Fester…..Quicker
  • Fibula…..A small lie.
  • Genital…..Not a Jew.
  • G.I. Series…..A soldier game.
  • Morbid…..A higher offer.
  • Nitrates…..Cheaper than day rates.
  • Node…..Was aware of.
  • Outpatient…..A person who has fainted.
  • Pap smear…..A fatherhood test.
  • Pelvis…..A cousin to Elvis.
  • Postoperative…..Letter carrier.
  • Recovery room…..Place to do upholstery.
  • Rectum…..Dang near killed ’em.
  • Secretions…..Hiding something.
  • Seizure…..Roman emperor.
  • Tablet…..A small table.
  • Terminal illness…..Getting sick at the airport.
  • Tumor…..More than one.
  • Urine…..The opposite of “you’re out”
  • Varicose…..Near by.
  • Vein…..conceited.

Yeah, I know.

August 9, 2008 at 2:47 am 3 comments

Bewildering.

Grapeview, Washington

Over the past 3 years or so, though not so much lately, I have been bewildered by the circumstances around my life and others close to me.  Bewildering is a word that fit well those days and a word that describes how others around me are feeling.  Bewildering means, to lead into perplexity or confusion, as for want of a plain path.  Things aren’t fitting as we think they should, things are confusing, the path is not plain.

The last few days I have spent some time with a good friend and others close to me who are bewildered by the events in their lives that just are not coming together in the way they thought they would.  One person has worked for nearly a decade to do what they believed God had clearly called them to, so clear was the call, they can tell you the exact place they were when they heard it, yet it just isn’t working.  Another believed they were called to do something, somewhat out of the ordinary, that just didn’t work at all, in fact the fall out from the decision has been devastating.  Both are bewildered, confused, perplexed and wanting desperately to find the “plain path”.

Before I go on, let me be clear.  There are natural consequences to all choices.  Bad choices always lead to bad consequences.  The law of sowing and reaping always works.  Sow poorly and you reap poorly.  I made some bad choices and I reaped the consequences of those choices.  Generally speaking, the Father seldom changes the natural order of sowing and reaping. The friends I mentioned understand they haven’t always made good decisions and they understand that some of the bewilderment they feel is flowing from those poor decisions.

But not all of it.  Why is it that the things we are sure we hear the Father say don’t always work out?  Why, when we make good choices, choices to help others, invest in something that we know will advance the Kingdom that it often doesn’t work out and we are left bewildered and frustrated?

This morning I read a devotional from Oswald Chambers and found it to be a satisfactory answer to the question of why we are often bewildered.

Here is what he writes:God called Jesus Christ to what seemed unmitigated disaster. Jesus Christ called His disciples to see Him put to death; He led every one of them to the place where their hearts were broken. Jesus Christ’s life was an absolute failure from every standpoint but God’s. But what seemed failure from man’s standpoint was a tremendous triumph from God’s, because God’s purpose is never the same as man’s purpose.

There comes the bewildering call of God in our lives also. The call of God can never be understood absolutely or explained externally. The call of God is like the call of the sea, no one hears it but the one who has the nature of the sea in him. It cannot be stated definitely what the call of God is to, because His call is to be His friend to accomplish His own purposes.  Our real test is to believe that God knows what He is after.The things that happen do not happen by chance, they happen entirely in the decree of God. God is sovereignly working out His purposes.

If we are in fellowship and oneness with God and recognize that He is taking us into His purposes, we will no longer strive to find out what His purposes are. As we go on in the Christian life it gets simpler, because we are less inclined to say – I wonder why God allowed this or that? And we begin to see that the compelling purpose of God lies behind everything in life and that God is divinely shapeing us into oneness with that purpose. A Christian is one who trusts in the knowledge and the wisdom of God, and not his own abilities. If we have a purpose of our own, it destroys the simplicity and the calm, relaxed pace which ought to characterize the children of God.

My goal these days is to make my plans but always with the recognition that I am most calm and relaxed when I do not hold my purposes too tightly, knowing that my Father is “divinely shaping me into oneness with His purpose”.  

I still am bewildered at times but I am slowly learning to recognize that God is not so much allowing hard things in my life, or thwarting my dreams, as He is leading me into the fulfillment of His purposes, not just for my good, but for His Kingdom and His glory.

Are you bewildered?  Does this help?  Your comments in agreement or disagreement are greatly appreciated.

August 6, 2008 at 10:53 pm 5 comments

Monday morning meanderings. Vol. 53

Grapeview, Washington

What a great morning!  For the first time in a month, I got up at a decent hour and enjoyed my coffee out of a mug rather than a thermos.  It was such a beautiful morning and the first time I have had the opportunity to spend it with the grandboys.  Good to do the M3 on a Monday morning, too.

Item one.  Thanks to all who sent congrats related to obtaining my CDL.  After 35+ years of working mostly with words and administrative things, to do something mechanical and “hands on” was both challenging and rewarding.  I am looking forward to getting behind the wheel of our Pete and earning a little money with the license.  The man who drives the truck for us now doesn’t need to worry about my taking his job, I will be at best a fill in driver unless we buy another truck, which we are considering.  Trying to think of ways to use a truck both commercially as well as to pull our 5th wheel.  That way we could sell the pickup and buy a car.  Glad to be done with the school but thankful it all came together.

Item two.  Small town newspapers are a hoot!  I was building a fire the other evening using the Mason County Journal for fire starter (perhaps its highest and best use) when I started reading the Journal of Record page which recounts the things the police bust people for, divorces filed and granted and a verbatim record of calls that came into the police during the last week.  I thought you might enjoy a small sampling of these calls: A caller from Kristi Court reported a peacock “running at large”.  Later another caller reported the same peacock “walking around like he owns the place”.  A caller from the 900 block of Fairmont Avenue reported receiving an “inappropriate text message and a nasty picture to go with it.”   A caller from E. Meyer Drive reported finding a cockatiel in the yard and inquired about what to do with the bird.  Then my favorite: …a caller said a Brahman bull escaped from the Mason County Fairgrounds and was headed toward Highway 101.  It was described as “big, black, three tons with horns”.

Item three. I have been thinking quite a bit lately, as well as experiencing, the battle we face as believers between faith and fear.  Hebrews says it is impossible to please the Father without faith and so our ability to please the Father is directly related to our capacity to walk in faith and reject fear.  When I was taking my CDL test and completely messing up the backing test, fear came in like a flood, almost to the point of incapacitation.  I stopped the truck, rejected the fear and spoke out loud the reality of my faith in a Father who knew what was best for me.  The fear left.  (more of my thoughts on this subject can be found here.)

There are so many people in my life who are strugging to walk in faith and reject the fear that sometimes seems overwhelming.  Questions like; “Will I ever get well?”, “Will the job work out so we can pay our bills?”  “Will we ever be able to buy a house?”  “Will we ever get back to the US with this baby?”  “Will anyone ever love me?”  …and the list goes on and on.  Fear always produces “why questions” but faith produces a “Who question”.  Either our Father loves us or He doesn’t.  Either He knows what we need and how desperate we are or He doesn’t.  It can’t be any other way or our faith is poorly placed. 

There are no simple answers or solutions to many of the questions we face in this life, but there is One who finds pleasure and delight in our choosing faith over fear.  Personally I am trying each day to choose faith when I am afraid, not so much to get something from my Father, but as the path to a relationship with Him I believe to be more precious, long term, than any of the things I think I need or want, right now.  It doesn’t always answer my questions but it does calm my fears.

Have a wonderful week.

August 4, 2008 at 11:12 pm 2 comments

It wasn’t pretty, but I passed!

Did well on the pre-trip, took all the points allowed to pass the backing and had 20 of the 24 against me on the road trip but it all added up to a pass and I can now get my CDL!  When the tester added up the points, I think he was as surprised as I was that I passed.  It had to be a God-thing.  Thanks for your prayers.  More on the test, Monday.

August 2, 2008 at 4:11 am 12 comments

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